"So, naturally, as Miller’s successor is about to be chosen the city has taken a different path, treating the process — at least so far — as if it were a state secret.
Here’s what little we do know: There are, again, two finalists whose names have not been shared with the public. They were picked from among a field of 45 candidates. One of those two finalists is not Col. Randy Powers of the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office. We know that only because Powers told us so.
And if the city brain trusts tell us anything more than that they’ll have to kill us. Well, not really, but you’d think so, given the cloak of mystery they’ve draped over this issue.
City Manager Jim Westmoreland was not available for comment Thursday. But city spokesman Donnie Turlington said the finalists’ names could be released as soon as next week. “We’re not quite in a position to discuss specifics related to the candidates,” Turlington said in an email.
“That being said, Jim and his leadership team involved in the hiring process understand the desire of the media and public to learn more about the candidates. Ultimately, we’re attempting to protect the integrity of the hiring process and protect the candidates by continuing to conduct a confidential and private process.”
But the integrity of the process also involves transparency. As both the job candidates and our city leaders should well know, the police chief ultimately works for the public and largely depends on the public’s trust for his or her success.
We have complained in the past about similarly secretive approaches to the hiring of key public officials. This one, in particular, will benefit from more openness and community input. Sooner rather than later."
Anytime city officials see the need to bring in Donnie Turlington to explain the situation it's because they've something they want to hide. That is, after all, Donnie's job.