Lee’s Summit Police Major Scott Lyons has been hands-on-deck since he joined the force in 1995.
In the 18 years since he first signed up to protect and serve the community of Lee’s Summit, Lyons has served as a detective in the special investigations unit, been promoted to sergeant (in 2002), reached the rank of captain (in 2005) and earned the title of major (in 2008). Lyons, who was announced Nov. 20 as interim police chief temporarily replacing the retiring Joe Piccinini, is currently the department’s division commander of operations.
Lyons will step into the interim role Jan. 17, 2014 after the retirement of Piccinini, who is ending his tenure with the department after 30 years on the force, the last six as chief of police.
Piccinini announced his retirement Oct. 31.
“I’m very honored,” Lyons said when reached Nov. 21. “It’s truly just a great opportunity to provide some leadership during this interim phase. It’s a great opportunity and I’m very, very excited.”
As far as his leadership philosophy, Lyons said he will stay the course and follow Piccinini’s lead when it comes to the direction of the department.
“Chief Piccinini led the department in becoming more centered around community-oriented policing,” Lyons said. “That is a philosophy that we all bought into and we are committed to pursuing. That’s the best model for policing the community and it has seen a lot of great results over the years.”
Lee’s Summit City Manager Stephen Arbo said Lyons will lead the department well on an interim basis.
“He has a strong working knowledge of all primary functions of the police department and has shown great leadership skills implementing many important projects and programs,” Arbo said in a news release announcing the move.
Those projects and programs include the installation of the new emergency services radio upgrade for Lee’s Summit’s public safety personnel, as well as other departments such as the public works and water utilities departments.
According to the news release, the radio communications project required a multi-departmental approach, seeking approval from the Federal Communications Commission, working through numerous “special-use permit” zoning processes, and coordination with the technical communication consultants and contractors.
The project was made possible by a 2010 voter-approved no tax increase bond issue that funded projects in the areas of public safety, public works and transportation.
“This was a great test of leadership and ability to work with several different stakeholders on a very complex project,” Arbo said.
Added Lyons: “The thing that is unique about this city is that we have all kinds of different community collaborations and partnerships that make it such a unique city that I’ve really enjoyed the most. Those are the things that make it enjoyable to work in this city.”
Lyons spent the early portion of his career assigned as a detective to the special investigations unit during the height of methamphetamine manufacturing in the Kansas City metropolitan area. In 1998, Lyons was assigned as a detective to the Jackson County Drug Task Force and Kansas City Metropolitan Methamphetamine Task Force where he targeted drug trafficking organizations.
After he returned to the department Lyons began his ascent through the ranks that will now include a turn as interim police chief. Arbo announced after Lyon’s takes the helm from Piccinini, he will embark on a national search for a new police chief starting in February.
Lyons said he hopes to be considered for the position
“That has always been my aspiration in law enforcement,” he said. “I come from a law enforcement family; a brother and a father that served and that’s always been a career goal.”
“I am confident that Major Lyons will serve the Lee’s Summit community well during the interim period,” added Piccinini. “We have a strong team of majors, captains, and sergeants who will continue providing a safe environment for our citizens under Major Lyons’ proven leadership.”