August Vollmer: The Father of American Policing by Willard M. Oliver

By Willard M. Oliver

Listen to the background Repeating Itself podcast with the author.

Watch this brief YouTube clip of the writer discussing Vollmer's use of bicycles within the Berkely police department.

August Vollmer used to be the most impressive males ever elected city marshal and appointed police leader in American historical past. It was once Vollmer who introduced policing out of its fully corrupt and infrequently brutal period of politics, via professionalizing not just his personal police division in Berkeley, California, yet police departments around the state and worldwide. He was once instrumental within the construction of the polygraph desktop (lie detector), patrol automobile radio communique structures, and, because the l. a. Police leader, the 1st crime lab in the USA. His maximum legacy, besides the fact that, used to be the better schooling software he created at UC Berkeley, which built into the disciplines of felony justice and criminology which are so common today.  

This riveting biography by means of Willard M. Oliver, ten years within the making, is the 1st single-volume, full-length biography of marshal, police leader, and Professor August Vollmer. it's a profound paintings of either biography and historical past, and brings to existence the guy who endlessly replaced American policing and police schooling, reaffirming Vollmer’s rightful name as “The Father of yank Policing.” Meticulously researched, the booklet attracts upon newly came upon fabric, interviews, and writings of Vollmer’s by no means earlier than used, permitting Oliver to craft a richly specified and engaging narrative of Vollmer’s lifestyles tale. This magisterial portrait of 1 of policing’s maximum leaders can provide to reshape our realizing of either the guy and his period and to rightfully repair August Vollmer as a family name.

"Every dwelling American police executive—past, current or future—must learn this booklet. The book's tales and info of Vollmer's existence is a deep good of notion for resolving many difficulties of policing, either within the US and round the world."   —From the Foreword through Prof. Lawrence W. Sherman

“This biographical exam of the existence and occasions of August Vollmer is far wanted and important for our field.  Oliver’s specific skill to place all of it into phrases offers us a last product that's crucial for the ages.” —Dr. Kenneth height, college of Nevada, Reno

“Especially in those occasions, police, their critics, and scholars want the type of standpoint that heritage and biography supply. Oliver has performed us all a good carrier by way of chronicling the profession of the mythical August Vollmer, an unintended policeman who formed a century of yank policing, and police schooling, via his activities, instructing, writing, and committed protégés. One hopes for extra books like this one, notwithstanding Oliver has set a excessive standard.”          —Dr. Gary Cordner, Professor Emeritus, Kutztown college & jap Kentucky University

“The contributions of August Vollmer to professionalizing policing advantage any superlative that would be applied.  The word ‘one individual could make a distinction on this planet’ is maybe overused, yet is unquestionably applicable to explain Vollmer’s influence.  In scripting this definitive biography, Will Oliver makes a contribution invaluable of Vollmer’s stature.” —Dr. Larry T. Hoover, Sam Houston country University

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