By Request: My Experience and the Training My Co. Provides LE Agencies Internationally


EDITOR’S NOTE: Seeing the response to the last article about Kootenai County Candidate for Sheriff, Rick Whitehead, we asked him for a submittal about his experience and the breadth his public safety and LE training and consulting company provides.


By Request: My Experience and the Training My Co. Provides LE Agencies Internationally – Rick Whitehead


By Rick Whitehead, Candidate for KC Sheriff


Based on the recent article titled “A Matter of Qualifications” I’ve been asked to describe the training I provide.


Here is how it all started:

As a sergeant at the Travis County Office in Texas, I designed a Field Training Program based on the best practices I had observed while attending various trainings in other agencies.  Field Training or (FTO) is the training program that a new recruit goes through when first hired by a law enforcement agency.  My program mapped out, among other things, the timelines and number of trainers the recruit would go through during their training and the documentation produced as a result.


I then designed a 40-hour curriculum to train the trainers.  Within a couple of years the program had spread to other agencies in the region and other states, which necessitated the formation of my firm Richard Whitehead & Assoc. LLC.  My FTO program is one of three listed on Wikipedia as recognized nationally (San Jose, Houston, & Travis County/Whitehead).  San Jose came to being in 1972 and Houston in 1982 and neither has evolved during their tenure, while mine has been modified over the years to adjust to the trends and needs of its users.


During my tenure with the Sheriff’s Office, I also designed a New Sergeant FTO program, a Returning Veteran (VIP) program for our deputies that had been deployed for extensive periods of time, as wells as Leadership and Forensic Statement Analysis courses.  Upon arriving in Idaho, while seeking accreditation for my courses, I was recognized by the Idaho Peace Officers and Training (POST), as a Subject Matter Expert in Field Training, Leadership, and Forensic


My firm now provides training and consultation on various topics internationally and below is a description of courses I personally instruct with a full course listing found on our website.  All of our courses revolve around one guiding principle: In all things, always treat others as you would want to be treated in like circumstances…. i.e. “The Golden Rule”.


Advanced Field Training Officer & Program Administrator      

This is not about a “program” but about the awesome responsibility of the job.  Geared to new FTO’s, current FTO’s and FTO supervisors and administrators.  We combine FTO, Leadership, Instructor Development, Teaching and Learning styles, Program Structure, Liability, and Bullet Proof Documentation to offer the most comprehensive course available.   Applicable to LE, Fire/EMS, Communications, and Corrections.  Agencies use this class for FTO Certification, to get their team “on the same page”, and/or to modify or build their FTO program.


FTO Program Development & Implementation

With the above course; we can assist in the development and implementation of an FTOP designed specifically to your needs. Complete with Standard Operating Guidelines that define: Responsibilities, Selection Processes, Performance Categories and Definitions, Program Length, Phases, Training Review Committee Procedures, etc.

Locally, Post Falls PD uses a Leadership training program designed for them.


Leadership 101

Leadership 101 Is geared to supervisors, new or veteran, FTO’s, and anyone interested in growing in their leadership skills.  The class revolves around discussions of ethics, leadership styles, communication, roles, planning, progressive discipline, etc.


Forensic Statement Analysis ~ Deception Detection 

Forensic Statement Analysis is a tool that is highly effective in the detection of deception hidden in a person’s written or spoken statement.  Attendees will discover techniques of critically examining the word choice, structure, and content of a person’s statement to determine:    Truth   or   Deception?

I also consult with agencies in high profile cases on Deception Detection.  You may have seen a bit of this locally as I’ve presented an intro for various civic organizations.


Conducting Successful Performance Appraisals

This course is specifically designed for New Supervisors, Managers, and HR personnel equipping them with the important aspects of their Performance Appraisal process to: Create a positive, responsive work environment, increasing morale and productivity!  * Eliminate intimidation, worry, and avoidance.  Appraisal signifies something of value or worth!  Positive Emphasis   =   Positive Results.


Instructor Certification / Development        (Basic & Advanced)

Is a very hands-on, intensive and interactive course designed to give instructors the skills to build and present their material with memorable results.  Everything matters!  From the moment your participant arrives to the time they depart.  Attendees will learn and then put into practical application the knowledge and skills to draw their participants totally into the delivery of their presentation.   Topics include: The learning process, learning, and instructional styles; learning objectives, development of lesson plans, teaching materials, and PowerPoint presentations.


IN SUMMATION, I think training and how people are treated are vital to the success of an organization and my hope is that this summary provided you with an understanding of my background and philosophies both in training and leadership that uniquely qualifies me to be the next Sheriff of Kootenai County.