The University of Utah’s efforts to prioritize, elevate and reimagine safety inspired me to re-engage in public safety service after three decades in state law enforcement. I am honored to serve as the chief safety officer at this time of self-reflection, creativity and transformation in campus safety.

Our effort requires going beyond historical policing. I am committed to increasing capacity, improving communication and strengthening professional standards. We have established new safety committees and developed a SafeU Student Ambassador program. New safety divisions and a centralized administrative office guide our strategic initiatives, campus partnerships and relationships with external public safety agencies. I am confident that our continued innovations will demonstrate effectiveness and help serve as a model for others.

I have always been passionate about public safety and service and look forward to leading with respect and empathy. After 31 years in law enforcement—working as a homeland security advisor to two governors, leading the Utah Highway Patrol and State Bureau of Investigation, and serving as commissioner of Public Safety for the state of Utah — I know that the future of public safety depends on listening to the community. We must be open to doing our work differently, acknowledging our difficult past and holding ourselves accountable to it.

Our team remains dedicated to earning the U community’s trust and partnering with you to create a safe and welcoming campus where everyone feels accepted and empowered to succeed. With the changes we are implementing, University Safety operations are becoming part of a holistic, transparent and strategic effort that allows us to work together to build an environment where everyone can feel safe with a sense of belonging.


Keith Squires

Chief Safety Officer

University of Utah





Key Initiatives


Accreditation is when a public safety organization reviews its directives, procedures, practices, and operations to demonstrate compliance with best practice standards established by an independent accrediting body. The University of Utah Department of Public Safety, is a candidate agency for accreditation by the Utah Chiefs of Police Association (UCOPA) and the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA).  To become accredited by both bodies, the department must demonstrate compliance with a combined 400 standards, many of which are specific to providing law enforcement and public safety services to a campus community. Compliance with these standards is determined during a rigorous, on-site assessment by members of the accrediting body. Accreditation increases department transparency and accountability, promotes professionalism, and ensures the highest quality delivery of public safety services.


The department developed a five-year strategic plan to guide University Safety efforts over the coming years. A group of representatives from across the department began meeting regularly in June 2020 to create a plan that outlines the vision, mission, objectives, strategies, and action plans that provide a foundation for the growing and evolving department and direct its efforts into the future.

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The U’s Campus Alert System is designed to reach everyone on campus in the best way possible during an emergency. Most alerts are sent via email. On rare occasions, when every second counts, emergency messages will be sent via text to cell phones. To sign up to receive text notifications, log into CIS and click on the Campus Alert link. Students, faculty, staff and even visitors can also be alerted of emergencies using the U Heads Up app.

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The Chief Safety Officer has created new committees and is revitalizing existing ones. These committees include students, faculty, and staff and ensure broad representation is included in public safety decision-making. The new Public Safety Advisory Committee explores policies, training requirements, and diversity strategies. The Independent Review Committee reviews citizen complaints of abusive language, violations of rights, excessive force, and dereliction of duty brought against public safety personnel. Following internal affairs reviews, this committee will be able to comment on policies and recommend procedural and communication changes.

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Bicycles stolen at West Village

May 1, 2023

Multiple laundry rooms with bicycle storage were broken into and three bicycles were taken from the property. No one was injured.

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Assault suspect sought by police

May 1, 2023

The suspect has been identified as 43-year old Uiva R. Solovi.

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Neither Squires

Introducing “The Dispatch”, the Department of Public Safety’s newsletter

May 31, 2023

I am excited to announce the launch of the Department of Public Safety’s new newsletter, The Dispatch. Our department has […]

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    We are committed to continuous improvement and to creating a safe environment that meets the needs of the U community. Please share your feedback with us. This information is received by the Office of the Chief Safety Officer, which serves as the central administrative unit for all public safety functions, including University Police, Community Services, Emergency Management, Emergency Communications, Campus Security, and U Health Security.

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