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Nashville oversight board names Chicago attorney as Executive Director

Posted at 4:57 PM, Apr 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-03 20:13:26-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Nashville's first Community Oversight Board nominated a top leader this week to run the group.

William Weeden, 56, is a Chicago-based attorney who graduated from Fisk University, and was selected by the board to be the first executive director.

His nomination comes on the eve of the one year anniversary of launching the board.

"He spent four years here so he knows his way around town a little bit and knows some community members here. So I'm excited to see him hit the ground running," community organizer Gicola Lane said.

Lane sat in on the nearly 5-hour meeting Tuesday night before a decision was made. Lane said four other nominees had law enforcement backgrounds.

When asked why the five nominees were from out of state, Lane said one was from Tennessee but not Nashville.

"I think that's a question for HR. I would have liked to see someone local but maybe the local folks who applied didn't have the experience that they were looking for. I will say that the candidates that they did have, two of them had previously worked for community oversight boards somewhere in the country. I think they were looking for someone who can get the board up and running and understand the functions of it...maybe they felt like they needed someone who was neutral," she said.

Public Safety and Justice Advisor Marcus Floyd said Metro will have to extend the official offer.

"As far as process goes, as I understand it, although Mr. Weeden is the preferred candidate, he still has to either accept or reject any offer extended to him. If he rejects, then an offer is extended to the second preferred candidate as ranked by the COB at last night’s meeting," he said.

Lane said the board still has to hire an assistant executive director, legal adviser, three investigators, community engagement coordinator and research analysts.

Metro Council has to approve the $1.5 million budget for all the positions the board plans to nominate.