wo weeks after losing the opportunity to become Parkville’s latest city administrator, Parkville Police Chief Bill Hudson says that he is seriously considering leaving the department he helped mold over the last decade.
“I’m thinking about it. I’m just looking for a new challenge. I’ve been here for 10 years. It’s one of those things. I’ve been (a law enforcement officer) for 36 years. This is the longest I’ve ever been in one spot for my entire life.”
The 57-year-old Hudson said his 10 years in Parkville have been very rewarding to him personally.
“I love this place and I love the people. I just feel that I have one more major challenge left in me.”
It was decided in a 5-4 vote at the May 4 meeting of the Parkville Board of Aldermen to offer the vacant city administrator’s job to Joseph Turner, the current city manager of Atchison, Kan. The aldermen said at the time that the vote wasn’t a vote against Hudson, but one that was for Turner.
Mayor Kathy Dusenberry, who cast the deciding vote, said she conveyed the message that the city wanted Hudson to stay on as police chief after the vote.
“I did…but it was in the same breath that I told him we were going to hire Joe Turner,” Dusenberry recounted. “I had been authorized to go and make an agreement with Mr. Turner, but I wanted to let him know right away, integrity-wise. He had been hanging on for a long time.”
Dusenberry said that Turner’s city management experience is what ultimately swayed her decision. Turner has been Atchison’s city manager for the past 14 years.
“The fact that Parkville is in such a pivotal place right now, I wanted somebody with a lot of city administrator experience and that’s what we got with Joe Turner.”
Dusenberry said that Hudson then told the former interim mayor Gerry Richardson that he would be leaving on July 1st.
“At that time we tried to talk him out of it. He’s put a lot of integrity back into the department. I respect him greatly and wish him the best in his next endeavor. I’m sorry to see him go.”
Dusenberry said the city has no candidates at this time but that they are looking for a chief that wanted to build on the community-policing program already in place.
Hudson said he was considering pursuing a career in teaching. He already has experience teaching at Park University, Missouri Western, and Kansas City police training sessions.
“It’s nice to get to share the things that you’ve learned over the years. Especially since I’ve learned most of it the hard way.”
Hudson said he wouldn’t rule anything out – not even a return to the position of police chief.
“I never say never.”