Debra spent her 28 year law enforcement career with the University of Wisconsin-Madison Police Department. She served as a Police Officer, Detective and then rose through the ranks to attain the position of Assistant Chief of Planning and Development, which includes Emergency Management and Infrastructure Security.
Debra is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Letters and Science earning a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a certificate in Correctional Administration. She is also a graduate of the Wisconsin Executive Leadership Development Program and is a Certified Ethics Trainer.
As Lieutenant and Captain of Field Services, Debra was responsible for patrol, investigations, security and dispatching functions. She led a team which developed the University’s first Crisis Response Plan and implemented the Department’s first Field Training Officer program.
After retiring in 2002, she returned in 2007, and developed training in Surviving a Mass Casualty Incident for faculty and staff of the 26 UW System schools, teaching over 200 police officers to deliver that training, and training faculty and staff in prevention of such incidents. She also served on the team that developed UW Madison’s Threat Assessment Team and assisted in the planning and development of annual Threat Assessment Training seminars for staff from 26 UW System Campuses.
In Debra’s role as Assistant Chief of Planning and Development, she was responsible for the overall administration and command of the entire department in conjunction with the Chief and second Assistant Chief. Specific accomplishments include leading the Emergency Management Unit in conducting a day long real-time full scale exercise, which involved over 600 participants and 20 agencies, the largest full scale exercise in Wisconsin history. She also led the Infrastructure Security Unit in an $8 million overhaul of the UW-Madison's Surveillance and Security Camera System, involving the development of a funding model, and analysis of the placement and effectiveness of over 1800 surveillance cameras.
As a Senior Consultant for The Riseling Group, Debra works in all aspects of service and training delivery.