6 candidates vying for top spot at SPD

Published 5:11 pm Wednesday, November 6, 2019

According to Selma City Council President Corey Bowie, the city will have a new chief leading the Selma Police Department (SPD) before the end of December and at least six candidates – two of which are local, the rest of which hail from Montgomery, Greenville, Tuscaloosa and Rowlett, Texas – are currently vying for the opportunity.

Locally, SPD Lt. Natasha Fowlkes and SPD Lt. Kenta Fulford have applied for the position.

Fowlkes, who has been at the center of a squabble between the Selma City Council and Selma Mayor Darrio Melton over defunded positions, started her law enforcement career in 2003 as an officer with the Montgomery Police Department (MPD).

After a year with the MPD, Fowlkes moved to the SPD, working as a sergeant until 2013, when she was promoted to lieutenant and then, four years later, she was promoted to captain, though that position has been argued over by the council for months.

Fowlkes is an active member of the Fraternal Order of the Police and Delta Sigma Theta sorority.

Further, Fowlkes has an associate’s degree from Wallace Community College – Selma (WCCS), which she completed while working for the SPD, as well as a bachelor’s degree in public safet and criminal justice from Amridge University in Montgomery, also earned while working for the SPD, and a master’s degree in justice administration from Faulkner University, which was also earned while working as an officer locally.

Fulford, whose resume is accompanied with a letter of recommendation from retired SPD Lt. Michael Harris, has spent the entirety of his law enforcement career with the SPD.

Fulford began serving as a Unit Supply Specialist for the Army Reserve in 1997, a post he holds to this day, and signed on with the SPD in 2002.

Fulford earned an associate’s and bachelor’s degree from Amridge University in criminal justice and served as Squad Leader when deployed to Iraq from 2003 until 2004.

From beyond Selma, former Butler County Sheriff Kenneth Harden, whose law enforcement experience extends back more than 40 years, has thrown his name into the hat to lead the local department.

Harden began his law enforcement career in 1978 as a deputy with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office, a post he held until 1982, which was when he became an office with the Greenville Police Department (GPD).

Harden served in that role until 1995 when he became a deputy with the Butler County Sheriff’s Office.

In 2002, Harden left the Butler County Sheriff’s Office in 2002 and accepted a job with the Alabama State Fire Marshal’s Office as a State Fire Marshal.

Harden was elected Sheriff of Butler County in 2006 where he maintained a balanced budget of $1.9 million with no errors or overages, according to his resume, which was accompanied by three letters of recommendation.

Another applicant for the local post is Morris Polion of Tuscaloosa, whose law enforcement career began in 1988 as an officer with the Tuscaloosa Police Department (TPD).

Polion left the TPD in 1995 and joined the Uniontown Police Department (UPD) before taking a post as chief of the Parrish POlice Department (PPD) in 1998.

Polion held that post until 2003 when he took a position as chief of the Akron Police Department (APD) – according to his resume, Polion worked as an officer in the Greensboro Police Department while swerving as chief in Akron.

Polion left his post in Akron in 2010 and his post in Greensboro in 2012 before signing on as a captain with the Stillman College Police Department in 2012 and as an officer once again with the UPD in 2015.

Polion holds a master’s degree in law and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.

Steohanie Stewart, who worked as an officer with the SPD previously, has also applied for the job.

Stewart’s law enforcement career began with the SPD, which she worked for from November 1999 until December 2001 and again from April until October 2002, as a patrol officer.

Stewart accepted a position as a probation and parole officer with the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles in 2002, a post she held until she was promoted to Probation and Parole Supervisor in 2005.

in 2008, she was promoted to Probation and Parole Manager, a post she still holds today.

Stewart’s resume includes multiple employment breaks due to military service, as she is currently serving as a major with the Alabama NAtional Guard.

Stewart earned a doctorate of philosophy in public policy and public administration from Walden University in Minneapolis, as well as a master’s degree in public administration from Auburn University – Montgomery and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Faulkner University.

The final applicant for the position is Anthony Tucker, Jr., who currently serves as a sergeant with the security force at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in Texas.

Tucker was promoted to sergeant in 2009 after joining the force in 2004.

Before that, Tucker was an officer with the Cedar Hill Police Department in Cedar Hill, Texas, which is where his law enforcement career began.

In 2015, Tucker was a finalist for the chief position at the police department in Ferris, Texas.