Robert K. Olson, Chief Inspector
Robert K. Olson was appointed Chief Inspector of the Garda Síochána Inspectorate in July, 2012. On establishment of the Garda Inspectorate in 2006, Chief Olson previously served three years in the organisation as Deputy Chief Inspector.
Prior to his appointment as Chief Inspector, Chief Olson served as a consultant for the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), working with the Chicago Police Department in facilitating an organisational study to assess the efficiency of their existing systems, policies and procedures.
Other aspects of his wide and varied policing career include a successful two year Youth Violence Prevention Project in Chicago, working with the Chicago Police and the Chicago Public School District, where he was directly involved in addressing the significant number of shootings and homicides involving Chicago Public School students. He also completed fourteen months in Jamaica working with PERF in violent torn Kingston, Jamaica as Chief of Party for the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) successful Grants Pen Community Policing Project.
Chief Olson was appointed Chief of Police in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA in 1995 and served for 9 years, retiring from active police service in 2004. Prior to Minneapolis, Chief Olson served as Police Commissioner in Yonkers, New York, Chief of Police in Corpus Christi, Texas and was promoted through the ranks to Deputy Chief of Police in Omaha, Nebraska
During his career he has been internationally recognised as a public safety consultant, past President of the PERF, a long time member of the Major Cities Chiefs Association and a life member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He has also served on numerous advisory boards at all levels of government, including an advisory committee to the FBI Director and newly appointed Homeland Security Secretary after 9-11. He has also been an adjunct instructor at three universities and co-author of a book on community policing.
Chief Olson is a graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha with Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Criminal Justice. He is also a graduate of the FBI’s National Executive Institute (Session XI) and the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police (Session IV).