CHICKAHSA, Okla. – January 6, 2021 – The Chickasha Police Department recently announced that Gillian O’Brien has been promoted to Lieutenant and Lauren Jewell has been promoted to Sergeant. These promotions fill vacancies left when Lt. Scott Weaver retired at the end of 2021.
These promotions mark the first time the Chickasha Police Department has had women in all ranks of leadership. Nationally, women comprise only about 13 percent of full-time police officers.
“I have struggled my way through all the ranks in my career,” said Chief Dee Rowell. “While this is not the 80s, there are still some barriers for women in law enforcement today, so getting more women into supervisory ranks is a bonus.”
Officers seeking promotion within the department sit for a two-hour written exam, followed by a 10-part assessment center and an interview with Rowell.
“Throughout an officer’s career, they need to show ambition,” Rowell said. “When officers put forth the effort to do extra training beyond what is required and take on more responsibility at the rank they’re at, that initiative is something we look for in someone stepping up to the next rank.”
As Lieutenant, O’Brien will be taking over as commander of Team 1 Midnights, overseeing the Sergeant and Officers on her shift. She will continue helping with some grants for Communications while training Jewell on the department’s recruitment and training processes.
O’Brien started her career as a Chickasha police officer in 2008 and was assigned as a Field Training Officer in 2012. From 2014 to 2018, she was an investigator before promoting to Sergeant on a patrol shift. Most recently she served as an administrative Sergeant, overseeing the Communications division and the hiring and training processes.
“I have worked hard throughout my career to better myself and anticipate needs of the department, helping create processes and encouraging growth and efficiencies,” O’Brien said. “I strive to make our department a better place to work, especially when we are so short staffed.”
Jewell, who was promoted to Sergeant, will be supervising Communications and oversee the recruitment process, while helping train others in the department to help manage the sex offender registry.
Passionate about helping children, Jewell joined the Chickasha Police Department in 2010. In her first years with the department, she developed Children of Our Community, helping provide Christmas gifts, coats and food for children who were in need. For the last five years, Jewell has served as a detective on the department.
“This specific Sergeant role is very unique in that I’m not just leading a shift, but I’m also overseeing the Communications division, recruitment and hiring for our department,” Jewell said. “It’s an exciting time to see women take the opportunity to hold leadership roles in our department and that I get to be part of that.”