Police Chief Booker Hodges has worked as a School Resource Officer, Patrol Deputy, Narcotics Detective, SWAT Operator, Patrol Overnight Watch Commander, Inspector, Undersheriff, Acting Chief Deputy, an Assistant Public Safety Commissioner and now Chief of Police.
Prior to joining the Bloomington Police Department in April of 2022, he served with Minnesota Department of Public Safety, Prior Lake Police Department and the Ramsey and Dakota County Sheriff’s Office. He has led agencies ranging from 40 to 1500 staff members.
Chief Hodges is the only active police officer in the history of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) to serve as a branch president. During his five-year tenure as president of the Minneapolis NAACP, Chief Hodges was responsible for a landmark agreement to improve working conditions for employees of color and to diversify the Minneapolis Park Board. During his time with the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office, Chief Hodges was responsible for the hiring that led to the Ramsey County jail becoming the first minority-majority staffed correctional facility in the State of Minnesota. Chief Hodges has been an Unconscious Bias Instructor for 22 years and is a Certified Human Resource Manager. Chief Hodges writes a column and is a member of the editorial board for Police1.com, the nation’s largest police news website.
Chief Hodges earned a doctorate degree in public administration from Hamline University, a master’s degree from Saint Mary’s University, and a bachelor’s degree from Florida Southern College. Chief Hodges’ experience in community relations and law enforcement is unique and has given him a dual perspective on current events surrounding the law enforcement profession. Chief Hodges is also an adjunct professor at University of Northwestern in Saint Paul and president of the Northstar Chapter of the National Association of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE). In addition, he currently serves as the elected National Parliamentarian for NOBLE.
Chief Hodges is married, and he and his wife have two sons.
Deputy Chief Clauson joined the Bloomington Police Department (BPD) in March of 1999. Deputy Chief Clauson began her career as a Patrol Officer, who also served as a Crime Scene Technician and Field Training Officer. Deputy Chief Clauson also spent two years in the Special Investigations Unit and was a founding member of the Bloomington Honor Guard Unit. She was promoted to Sergeant in 2009 and was a Patrol Sergeant for several years before supervising various units of the Investigations Bureau. Deputy Chief Clauson was promoted to Commander in 2015 where she managed both the Patrol and Investigations Bureaus. Deputy Chief Clauson spent six years at the rank of Commander before being promoted to the rank of Deputy Chief in 2021 where she is currently overseeing the Investigations, Core Values and Support Services Bureaus.
Deputy Chief Clauson attended Northwestern Police Staff and Command Class 314 and is a graduating member of the 284th session of the FBI National Academy. She has a bachelor’s degree from Saint Mary’s University in Police Science and a Master’s in Public Safety and Law Enforcement Leadership from St. Thomas University.
Jeff Giles is a Deputy Chief for the Bloomington Police Department (BPD) and currently overseas the Patrol and Special Operations Bureaus. Besides the officers and supervisors assigned to the Patrol Bureau, these divisions also include the South Loop Unit, Crime Prevention Unit, Traffic Investigations Unit, Reserves, Cadets, Honor Guard, Animal Control, and the Emergency Services Group. Deputy Chief Giles holds an Associate of Arts degree in Law Enforcement from Normandale Community College.
Deputy Chief Giles started his career at the BPD one week before the Mall of America opened in August of 1992. During his career he has served as a K9 handler, SWAT team member, Field Training Officer, Bike Patrol Officer, and as an Investigator. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2004 and was assigned to the Patrol Bureau while also serving as a SWAT team leader for ten years. In 2014 he was selected to supervise the Special Investigations Unit which primarily focuses on narcotics and human trafficking investigations, and he filled that role until promoted to Deputy Chief in July of 2020. Prior to joining the BPD, he served for four years as a Detention Deputy for the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputy Chief Giles is married and has two sons and they have been residents of the Bloomington community since 1997.
Damon Bitney has been a Commander for the Bloomington Police Department (BPD) since 2018. Commander Bitney holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Metropolitan State University. He is also a graduate of Northwestern University Center For Public Safety-School of Police Staff and Command.
Commander Bitney joined the BPD in January of 2000. Throughout his tenure he has worked as a patrol officer; a member of the South Loop Unit; a narcotics detective; a member of SWAT for over 16 years; Use of Force/Taser instructor; Patrol, Crime Prevention Unit and Training Division sergeant; and Core Values, Investigations and currently Day Patrol Bureau commander. Commander Bitney was also an assistant instructor at Rasmussen University.
Prior to his service with the Bloomington Police Department (BPD), Commander Calhoun began his career as a patrol officer in 2000 with the City of Winthrop Police Department in Minnesota. Commander Ben Calhoun joined the BPD in June of 2001.
Commander Calhoun was assigned to the Patrol Bureau with specialty assignments as a field training officer, investigator, and SWAT Team member. In 2009, Commander Calhoun received the Optimist Club Respect for Law Officer of the Year Award and was also promoted to the rank of Sergeant where he supervised the Patrol and Investigative Bureaus, as well as the SWAT Team. In 2018 Commander Calhoun was promoted to the rank of Commander and managed the Night Patrol Bureau prior to his current assignment managing the Core Values Bureau.
Commander Calhoun holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Minnesota State-Mankato. He has dedicated his law enforcement career to ensuring the BPD sets the example for other law enforcement agencies and maintains a high level of professionalism and police services to the City of Bloomington.
Commander Eric Kittelson began his career in security management and transitioned to community corrections shortly thereafter. Commander Kittelson continued to explore other opportunities and migrated to corrections with the Carver County Sheriff’s Office in 1997. He found his calling in police work and worked for the Carver County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) for 24 years. During that time, he worked as a Detention Deputy, Patrol Deputy, Corporal, Sergeant, Field Training Officer, Defensive Tactics Instructor, Crime Scene Technician, and Gas Team Leader on an Emergency Response Team.
Commander Kittelson worked nine years as a Lieutenant with the CCSO overseeing various divisions including patrol, investigations, professional responsibility, civil, court security/transports, and liaison to the City of Chanhassen.
Commander Kittelson has received certificates in management training from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and in Supervision of Police Personnel from Northwestern University. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice from St. Cloud State University and has completed the School of Police Staff and Command at Northwestern University. Commander Kittelson received a Master of Arts degree in Public Safety and Law Enforcement Leadership from the University of St. Thomas.
Commander Kittelson joined the City of Bloomington in October 2021 and currently serves as the Commander of the Special Operations Bureau which includes the Emergency Services Group and the South Loop and Crime Prevention Units.
Commander Joe Spark began his career as a Patrol Officer in 1998 with the Roseville Police Department where he served as a Patrol Officer, K9 Officer, Crime Impact Team member and SWAT Team Member.
In 2004 he joined the Bloomington Police Department and has since served in Patrol, with specialty assignments as a K9 Officer and Mobile Field Force member. In 2011, Commander Spark received the Optimist Club Respect for Law, Officer of the Year Award. In 2013 he was promoted to Sergeant where he was a Patrol Sergeant, and supervised the K9 Unit, as well as the Mobile Field Force. In 2021, he was promoted to the rank of Commander where he oversees sergeants and officers assigned to the night platoon of the Patrol Bureau, along with the K9 Unit, Street Crimes Unit, UAV (Drone) Unit, and Honor Guard.
Commander Spark has dedicated his career to providing proactive policing and police response to the citizens and visitors of Bloomington.
Commander Utecht has been serving in law enforcement for 30 years. He began his career with the Faribault Police Department in 1992 and served as a Patrol Officer, Detective (including serving on a drug task force), and SWAT team member.
In 1999 he was hired by the Bloomington Police Department and served in Patrol and the South Loop Unit with specialty assignments as a Field Training Officer, Bomb Detection K9 handler, and Bomb Unit member.
In 2013 he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant where he supervised Patrol, Dispatch, Special Events, as well as the Bomb and South Loop Units until he was promoted to Commander in 2017. Since that time, he supervised the Patrol and Special Operations Bureaus prior to his current assignment with the Investigations Bureau.
Commander Utecht holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from St Mary’s University and an Associate of Applied Science Degree from Alexandria Technical College.
Support Services Bureau Manager Laurene Draper joined the Bloomington Police Department (BPD) in March of 2015, overseeing the Support Services Bureau which includes the 911 Emergency Communications Center, Records Unit, Property and Evidence Unit, Accounting/Finance, Facility, and Department Technology.
She began her law enforcement career with the Edina Police Department, where she served 20 years in a variety of roles, including Public Safety Dispatcher, Dispatch Supervisor and Civilian Services Manager.
During her tenure with the Edina Police Department, she was responsible for the consolidation of the Edina and Richfield Communications Centers. During this unique consolidation, she also worked with the Metropolitan Emergency Services Board and other agencies on the acquisition and implementation of a multi-agency shared/hosted 911 system.
While serving with the BPD, Ms. Draper has held a variety of positions on city committees that assist with the rapidly changing landscape of municipal government. She has served for five years on the Information Technology Steering Committee, is a member of the Bloomington Data Management Team, and serves on the Data Governance Council. In addition, Ms. Draper serves as an alternate member of the LOGIS Board of Directors and is a member of the LOGIS Police Executive Steering Committee
Civilian Services Manager Draper had oversite of the BPD’s transition to a new public safety software suite in 2017, the transition to NIBRS in 2020, and was responsible for BPD’s communications and technology for Super Bowl LII in 2018.
Ms. Draper has a B.S. in Business Administration from Metropolitan State University.