Interviews set for two Willmar police chief finalists
WILLMAR — Willmar City Administrator Charlene Stevens said interviews are set Thursday with two finalists to fill the vacant position of police chief that was created by the recent retirement of David Wyffels.
The finalists — Captain James E. Felt of the Willmar Police Department and David A. Kvam of Stacy, commander of patrol operations with the Maplewood Police Department — were selected from a field of 10 applicants.
James E. Felt
Felt has served with the Willmar Police Department since July 1990. He was investigative specialist from May 1995 to May 1996; patrol officer from July 1990 to May 1995 and May 1996 to 2000; was patrol sergeant from December 2000 to May 2011; and has held the office of captain from May 2011 to the present.
Felt’s responsibilities include daily running of the department, assuming command in the absence of the chief, directing and supervising unit leaders, directing and scheduling training, approving budgeted purchases, performing internal affairs investigations, ensuring personnel adherence to department rules and regulations, evaluating sergeants and department units, acting as the court officer for signing criminal complaints, and ensuring the orderly flow of information to the court.
Felt is former lead supervisor for the implementation of department K-9 program; former SWAT team leader; and is coordinator for the department-sponsored Special Olympics Polar Bear Plunge.
Other emergency service experience includes emergency medical technician with Willmar Ambulance Service; charter member and volunteer tactical team medic with Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Office; firefighter and training officer with Spicer Fire Department; first responder/EMT with Spicer First Responders; former assistant team leader and hazardous materials technician with Kandiyohi County Hazardous Materials Emergency Assistance Team; extrication technician with Kandiyohi County Rescue Squad; and emergency medical technician with Kerkhoven Rescue Squad and Ambulance.
Felt’s education includes Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command; and bachelor of science degree in criminal justice administration and associate of applied science in fire science from Columbia Southern University.
David A. Kvam
Kvam began his police career in January 1989 and has since served as a peace officer in both rural and metropolitan police agencies. He served as patrol officer from 1993 to 1995 with the Maplewood Police Department and was patrol officer with the Winona Police Department from January to July 1995.
He returned to the Maplewood Police Department where he served as patrol officer from 1995 to 1998; investigator from 1998 to 1999; was sergeant from 1999 to 2003; lieutenant responsible for south district police service from 2003 to 2006 and lieutenant managing the investigative unit from 2006 to 2009; acting police chief from November 2012 to July 2013; deputy police chief from 2009 to November 2012 and July 2013 to March 2014; and commander providing direct supervision to lieutenants from March 2014 to present.
Kvam is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, and holds a master of arts in police leadership from the University of St. Thomas and bachelor of arts in criminal justice from Bellevue University.
Kvam has served in a broad variety of assignments, providing a well-rounded base of knowledge and experience in police management and operations.