FREEPORT — Interim Police Chief Susan Nourse and Brunswick Police Cmdr. Marc Hagan are the finalists for the position of Freeport police chief.
Residents can meet both of them in a forum scheduled for Thursday, May 19, in the Town Council Chambers. There will be a meet-and-greet with the public and a question-and-answer session. One candidate will be in the spotlight from 6-7 p.m., and the other from 7-8 p.m.
Either Nourse or Hagan will succeed former Chief Jerry Schofield, who had been on the force since 1976, and became police chief in 1988. He retired in March.
“We want public participation,” Town Manager Peter Joseph said. “We’re trying to focus it on the community because community-oriented policing is a hot topic. Schofield was great at that. We’re not looking for someone just to sit behind a desk.”
Town staff and members of the Maine Association of Chiefs of Police conducted interviews with 20 applicants for the job. Schofield was earning $92,500 annually and the salary is negotiable, Joseph said.
“We selected five candidates who were very well qualified,” he said. “We decided on the finalists (last Thursday). Both have 20-plus years with their departments. We’re excited. We think they’re both great candidates.”
He said a choice will be made within a week or two.
Nourse has been with the Freeport Police Department for 33 years, having started as a part-time dispatcher and working her way up to lieutenant.
She has handled much of the department’s press releases and communications. She is a trustee for Seeds of Independence and its Jump Start program, a court diversion program for first-time, non-violent offending youth.
Hagan is in his 26th year with the Brunswick Police Department. The Brunswick native now lives in Topsham.
Hagan began as a patrol officer. He worked up to sergeant and lieutenant, and has been patrol commander for the past eight years. He has worked with community groups and, in his capacity as patrol commander, is the department’s public information officer.
“I’ve done a lot of community-oriented policing in the past few years,” he said.
Freeport Interim Police Chief Susan Nourse, left, and Brunswick Police Cmdr. Marc Hagan are the finalists for police chief in Freeport.