Eastern Michigan University announced Robert Heighes as its new executive director of public safety and chief of police via campus email at 4:43 p.m. April 19. His appointment will be effective on April 20, with a starting salary of $128,000.

“I am pleased to be named to this position,” Heighes said. “I care a great deal about EMU and the welfare of our students and employees. I am proud and honored to be selected.”

Heighes, who lives in Pinckney, has worked at EMU since 1984 and has served as a campus police officer, sergeant as well as lieutenant and assistant director of the department. He has also served as interim executive director of public safety three times, including most recently following former chief Greg O’Dell’s death.

Heighes graduated from EMU with a bachelor of science degree in public administration in 1995 and is currently pursuing a masters in public safety administration at EMU. He also completed law enforcement executive leadership programs at Northwestern University, Central Michigan
University and the EMU School of Police Staff and Command.

According to the email from Geoff Larcom, Heighes was selected out of five finalists from a national search.

President Susan Martin, as quoted by Larcom, said she was “delighted” that Heighes was selected.

“Bob knows and loves the campus, and our police force team has done great work,” Martin said. “Bob’s leadership and experience here have been crucial in protecting the campus and in quickly solving crimes.”