Janice Jordan, the district chief for Parkland for the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, is one of three finalists to be the new police chief in the village.
Jordan, 49, applied for the Tequesta position in January, about six weeks prior to the shooting that resulted in the deaths of 17 persons at Margory Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14.
Parkland, like Lake Worth in Palm Beach County, contracts the county Sheriff’s Office for police services. Jordan, a Jupiter resident, holds the rank of BSO captain and is in charge of BSO services Parkland.
“I did my job. My position in Parkland should not effect my chances for this position,” said Jordan, who was a police officer for 20 years with Fort Lauderdale prior to joining BSO. She is a native of Portland, Maine, and grew up in Hollywood, Fla.
Jordan declined to comment on the specifics of the Parkland incident, saying the investigation was ongoing.
Tequesta Mayor Abby Brennan said she was at first concerned about hiring a former Parkland district chief. Those concerns vanished after she met with Jordan.
“I feel comfortable with her. She knows the community and the culture. I don’t see hiring her as taking a risk,” said Brennan, who also praised the other two finalists.
The new Tequesta police chief is expected to be named this week to head the village of 19 sworn police officers with an annual budget of $3.3 million. The new chief’s salary will be between $90,000 and $128,000.
Village Manager Mike Couzzo will name the new police chief in the 6,000-resident village on the northeast corner of Palm Beach County bordering Martin County. Council approval is not required.
“(Jordan’s) position as Parkland district chief is taken under consideration as part of the decision-making process,” said Couzzo.
The three finalists — whittled from 128 nationwide candidates — met with the public Monday morning over pastries, coffee and orange juice at the Village Hall on Tequesta Drive. The candidates previously met with village officials and police officers.
“We want a police chief that will get out of the office and work in the community,” Brennan said.
The new police chief replaces Christopher Elg, who retired earlier this month.
The other two finalists:
• John Buturla, 58, is a native of Stratford, Conn. He served several police positions in the state, including chief administrative officer in New Haven and police chief of Stratford. He was named interim deputy chief administrative officer for operation in Richmond, Va. He retired in September of 2017. He is a senior consultant for the Naval Post-graduate school.
“I lead by example. I like to be out in front with the police officers,” Buturla said.
• Gustavo Medina, 43, is a native of New Jersey. He started his career as a corrections officer before becoming a police officer with the Newark Police Department in 1999. He was named Administration Bureau Police Director in 2011, second in command in the department. He was named Lieutenant of Detectives in the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office in 2014, and investigated police shootings and allegations of misconduct.
“I grew up in a small town. I’ve worked with lots of small departments. I like to be accessible,” Medina said.