One of the best things about writing this blog is the opportunities that I have been given to meet some of the most wonderful people in our community. I am honoured to be running this feature showcasing some of the ‘People of Orangeville’.
You’ve all seen him around Orangeville, you’ve all probably had the opportunity to meet him, and if not, you’ve definitely read about him online and in the local papers. Today’s feature is dedicated to Orangeville Police Chief Wayne Kalinski.
Chief Kalinski – Photo Credit to Jim Waddington (Orangeville Now – J.A.W Photography for All Occasions)
A truly great leader is hard to come by, and Orangeville is so fortunate to have found one of the best in Police Chief Wayne Kalinski. It’s no secret that as recently as 3 years ago, the Orangeville Police Service had lost the respect and trust of the community. In fact, leading up to the 2014 Municipal Election, the hottest issue was policing. In 2014, then Deputy Chief Kalinski stepped up to the plate an accepted the role of Chief in what was a very struggling organization. As a leader, one of the greatest challenges to accept is the challenge to fix something that is very broken. Chief Kalinski was up for that challenge.
Photo Credit – Jim Waddington
‘Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others’ ~John Maxwell (Author)
It wasn’t long before you were able to feel the change in the air. Within weeks, morale was up, OPS was more visible in the community and the tension between the community and OPS started to slowly fade. Chief Kalinski showed nothing but respect for his position. He had a vision of greatness and his plan was to accomplish that through transparency, accountability and community involvement.
I run into the Chief everywhere…he is more present in our community than anyone I have ever seen. Whether it’s a fundraiser, an event, the farmer’s market, Council Meetings, or walking a beat, Chief Kalinski is there. And he’s not just there. He is spending every one of those moments embracing the people of the community. Speaking to them about their concerns. Answering their questions. Truly listening and open to try to find resolutions. And it’s not just the Chief – the officers in this community are now more present, more open, more community driven than ever before. A great leader inspires greatness in others, and Chief Kalinski has definitely led by example.
I recently sat down with the Chief to ask about his accomplishments over the last couple of years and he was so humble in his reply. To Chief Kalinski, these aren’t his accomplishments, they’re a collaboration of the entire team who embraced his vision and knew that Orangeville Police Service had the ability to be the best in the country. I pressed a little harder to really learn about his leadership style – “Respect and Honesty” – and what he meant by that is that every person who is part of Orangeville Police Service knows that the Chief has their best interests in mind – ALWAYS. They are part of his family and are treated with that level of respect.
“I am proud to be the Police Chief for the dedicated staff of the Orangeville Police Service. Our team is focused on providing the best possible service for our citizens. I am also grateful to have met so many wonderful people in Orangeville who truly care about the community in which we all live and work. May our collective town spirit continue to be a model of inspiration for all to admire.”
Photo Credit – Jim Waddington
Thank you Chief Kalinski – Thank you for your hard work, dedication and devotion to making Orangeville a better and safer place for us to live and work. Thank you for being a mentor to many and for inspiring change and more community involvement. Keep up the great work and thank you for being one of the great ‘People of Orangeville’.