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Michael Hancock announces three new finalists for independent monitor

Will the second time be a charm? A screening committee has submitted a trio of finalists for Denver's independent monitor job to Michael Hancock -- two months after the mayor's choice to fill the vacancy left by Richard Rosenthal turned him down, and the mayor declined to extend the offer to either of the other finalists.

At the urging of then-Mayor John Hickenlooper, Denver City Council approved creating the position of an independent monitor. Rosenthal moved here from Portland to become Denver's first, and so far only, independent monitor; after almost six years in the job, he announced in December that he was heading to a new job in Vancouver. In January, Hancock appointed a committee to search for a replacement. And their work started all over again in May.

"We are so appreciative of this committee's hard work to identify a strong pool of candidates to serve as Denver's next Independent Monitor," Mayor Hancock said in yesterday's announcement. "I look forward to reviewing and interviewing these finalists."

Unlike the three Californians in the last round of finalists, these three -- out of a pool of 72 -- all have strong local ties. Here are the descriptions provided by the mayor's office:

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Gary L. Maas -- Maas currently serves as the Associate Director of the Colorado Department of Corrections, managing the Division of Adult Parole, Community Corrections and Youthful Offender System. Prior to working at the Department of Corrections, he served as the Police Chief of Littleton for 10 years. Maas worked to reestablish standards and policies and to implement an agency-wide community policing philosophy. The Department achieved initial CALEA Accreditation in 2006, implemented a professional standards Code of Conduct and a disciplinary matrix system. Maas also served as Police Chief for Sioux City, Iowa, and as a police lieutenant for the City of Wheat Ridge. He received a Master of Public Administration from the University of Colorado at Denver and a Bachelor of Science degree from Metropolitan State College of Denver.

Nicholas E. Mitchell, Esq. -- Mitchell currently works as a federal and state commercial litigator at Silver & DeBoskey in Denver, focusing on complex commercial, real estate and employment matters. Before joining Silver & DeBoskey, Mitchell was a litigator at Allen & Overy, a large international law firm, where he litigated securities class-action lawsuits and U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigations. He also worked as an investigator for New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board, managing a team of investigators responsible for investigating alleged police misconduct. Mitchell is a past co-chair of the ABA White Collar Crime Committee Newsletter and is fluent in Spanish. He received his Juris Doctorate from Fordham University School of Law, NY, and his Bachelor of Arts degree from Evergreen State College, WA.

Kenneth E. Moore -- Moore has served the El Paso County Sheriff's Office for 22 years, holding a number of managerial positions. Most recently serving as a commander, Moore managed the Office's budget, information technology, human resources, communications, training academy, fleet and law enforcement sections. While commander of both the Patrol Division and Administrative Services Division, a number of his units garnered "Unit of the Year" awards, including the SWAT team, human resources, communications and crime reduction units. Moore also served seven years as an internal affairs investigator and manager for the Office, conducting and monitoring investigations encompassing ethics violations, corruption, fraud, waste and abuse. Moore is a graduate of the FBI National Academy 230th Session and an honorably discharged veteran of the United States Air Force. He received his Bachelor of Science degree and graduated Summa Cum Laude in Criminal Justice from Colorado Technical University.

Denver residents will get a chance to meet the three finalists from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 24 at Escuela Tlatelolco, 2949 Federal Boulevard.

What does the city's independent monitor do? Read Joel Warner's "Richard Rosenthal keeps a close eye on the Denver police."

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