Mayor Michael O’Connor is pleased to announce the hiring of Jason A. Lando as Chief of Police for The City of Frederick. Chief Lando was selected following a process that included a nationwide search and unprecedented community input.
Lando comes to Frederick from the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police (PBP), where he has served the Pittsburgh community since 2000. Lando worked his way up the ranks from Officer to Commander, serving as the Commander in Zone 5 for six years, where he led over 100 officers. Most recently, as a Commander in the Investigations Branch, he managed the Narcotics and Vice Division.
In his role as Commander, Lando worked collaboratively with officers and community members to change the perception of police in some of the most marginalized neighborhoods of the city. He was the catalyst behind several community programs, including “Youth Connections,” a comprehensive teen engagement program that paired youth with officers for one-on-one conversations and role-reversal scenarios. Through this program as well as several other initiatives, community cooperation with police increased, complaints dropped 40 percent, and crime dropped across most categories. Appointed by the PBP Chief of Police, Lando served as one of the Police Bureau’s representatives in the National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice. As part of this effort, Lando was a lead trainer of the Procedural Justice Unit, where he developed and implemented trainings on procedural justice, de-escalation, and implicit bias for all 1,000 Pittsburgh police officers. This training program was then conducted with several community groups across Pittsburgh, as well. Lando also led the implementation of the department’s body-worn camera, Narcan, and less-lethal weapons programs at Zone 5; all of which increased community safety and improved engagement with residents.
Lando has also been heavily involved in and committed to officer development. He worked closely with the Bureau’s Peer Support Team to support officer physical and mental well-being, and has been a leader in designing and implementing coaching, counseling, and mentoring training for all sergeants and lieutenants.
“Through my interactions, research, and engagement with those who know Jason Lando, it is clear he is a collaborative, transformational, and community-minded leader. His commitment to procedural justice, officer training, officer wellbeing, work with community programs, including co-responder efforts and youth engagement priorities, are just a few of the reasons why I am confident Jason Lando will be an excellent addition to our already high-performing police department,” shared Mayor O’Connor.
“It is an honor to be selected as the next Chief of Police for The City of Frederick. The men and women of the Frederick Police Department should be proud of the work they have already done towards making the Department a first-class organization. I look forward to supporting our officers in making it even better,” shared Jason Lando. “It is my goal to build relationships rooted in trust and transparency with the many diverse community groups throughout the city. I have seen firsthand the amazing things that can be accomplished when police and residents work together. The voice of the community is important in determining how we police, and I look forward to hearing more from the people of Frederick.”
Lando received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh in Emergency Medicine Management and his master’s degree from the California University of Pennsylvania in Legal Studies with a focus in Criminal Justice. In Pittsburgh, Lando served as a board member for several community organizations, including the Pittsburgh Child Guidance Foundation, Foxwall Emergency Medical Service, and Small Seeds Development, Inc. He also volunteers as a big brother to 13-year-old Jayden as part of the Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Bigs in Blue program.
The search began with more than 30 candidates. Chief Lando was one of seven candidates selected by a community-member-led search committee. Mayor O’Connor narrowed the list to two candidates, who then participated in a Finalist Forum, providing presentations to the community and an interview with the Fraternal Order of Police FSK Lodge 91.
Throughout the process, the community provided feedback, including more than 680 responses to a community survey conducted by the initial search committee and more than 130 responses offering feedback following the Finalist Forum presentations. A survey was also conducted with the current members of the Frederick Police Department.
“Since the beginning of this process, the community has been a valuable partner in selecting our next Chief of Police. I appreciate all who provided feedback and took an active part in this important hire for the community,” shared Mayor O’Connor. “I also want to thank the members of the Frederick Police Department for their input and continued commitment to serving Frederick while we conducted this national search. Acting Chief Dwight Sommers and Retired Chief Patrick Grossman have been incredible leaders, and I thank them for their exceptional service serving in the Chief role during this transition.
Chief Lando will be moving to Frederick with his partner Troy and their dog, Benson. He will begin his duties on March 8, 2021.