Two high-ranking and long-serving members of the Dallas Police Department are finalists for the top job at the Frisco Police Department, Frisco announced Wednesday. DPD Executive Assistant Chief David Pughes and DPD Major and acting Deputy Chief Max Geron are joined by Frisco Deputy Chief David Shilson on the short list.
Pughes joined DPD in 1990 and has twice served as de facto head of the department. First after Chief David Brown stepped down in 2017 and then again this year when Chief U. Renee Hall went on medical leave. Before coming to Dallas, Pughes served as a sheriff's deputy in Jefferson County, Colorado.
Geron, the head of DPD's Criminal Investigations Bureau, is one of DPD's public faces, thanks to his activity on Twitter and media appearances. He has contributed to the Observer, offering perspective on the state of the department in the aftermath of the July 7, 2016, police shooting in downtown Dallas. Geron's personal essay from the shooting's immediate aftermath remains perhaps the most vivid account of that night.
A year after the shooting, Geron shared his thoughts on the state of DPD's relationship with the city it polices:
"It’s important for officers to be reminded that the clear majority of the public supports them," Geron wrote. "I frequently tell people: I can count on one hand how many times someone bought my lunch during the first 10 years of my career. However, in the last 12 months, it’s happened too many times to count. This is a testament to the amazing citizens of the city of Dallas and even the surrounding Metroplex as a whole. The outpouring of support in the last year has been incredible. Dallas cried with us, and we continue to feel that support. This anniversary is not the police department’s alone, and we recognize that. It is our collective burden to shoulder, and having the citizens lighten this load throughout the year has meant a lot to us."
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Wednesday, Geron, a 27-year DPD veteran, told the Observer via email that he was "honor(ed) to be considered in such esteemed company for this opportunity with such an outstanding police department."
The internal candidate, Shilson, joined FPD in 2002 from the College Station Police Department.
The three finalists are expected to formally interview for the job on Tuesday. Frisco expects to hire its new chief by the end of the month.