Brookfield Trustees Mark Ferrara and Shannon Devitz have started the process of replacing retiring Police Chief Dan Faustino by agreeing to post that members of the department can apply for the position.

Trustee Dan Suttles said he was against the posting, arguing that the position should be opened up so department employees and candidates from outside the department both could apply.

Department personnel will have 14 days to register their interest in being the next chief, and the trustees said they will schedule interviews the week of Feb. 12. Ferrara said he hopes the posting will go up by the end of the week.

Faustino officially retired at the end of 2021, but agreed to stay on for two years in a retire/rehire arrangement, and then for another six months, which ends at the end of June.

Faustino has recommended that Sgt. Aaron Kasiewicz, the department’s detective, be named chief, but Ferrara said he would “treat everybody (who applies) the same, see who rises to the top.”

The trustees could always look outside the department if they can’t find a suitable in-house candidate, Ferrara said.

“I would like to give those in-house a shot, and if we don’t like them or they don’t like us I think we owe it to ourselves to do that,” he said.

“There’s a culture back there and we’re not privy to it, the ins and outs of it, but it’s for the most part working,” Devitz said.

She said she favors a new chief be hired on a probationary basis, which would give the trustees a better sense of whether the person hired is a good fit.

Ferrara and Devitz said they want a prospective new chief hired before Faustino leaves, so Faustino can aid in the transition.

Suttles said he has nothing bad to say about Kasiewicz or the department’s other sergeant, Cody Dean, the top ranked officers after Faustino and third- and fourth-longest tenured employees. School Resource Officer Gerald Hockey has been with the department longer than both sergeants.

“I believe that both of our sergeants, they both offered some good characteristics and could possibly be a good police chief,” Suttles said. “To just hand somebody that (chief’s job) because they’ve been in the system, if I was that person, I would say, ‘Did you just give me this or did I earn it?’”

If the trustees interview in-house and then go outside “that means, ‘we’re not good enough,’” he said of the in-house candidates who were interviewed.

“What if we only have one that applies?” he added. “If you interview for a job and one person’s interviewed, that’s not an interview. How do we know if that person that we interview from within is the best if we don’t look at somebody else?”

Suttles added he would like the perspective of police professionals to aid him in the search.

“I know nothing about police training and ballistics or training and drug awareness,” he said. “I know nothing about that. I’m not a police person. If we’re gonna come up with some thoughts, I think the police chief should be a good public servant on communication with the public but, as far as their credentials as a police officer, I would have to look it up or ask someone else.”