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Communication is the key to success: Milwaukee’s newest leaders speak on vision for the city

MILWAUKEE -- Two of Milwaukee's newest leaders speak to members of Milwaukee's Common Council. Interim Police Chief Alfonso Morales and interim Health Director Patricia McManus laid out their vision for their departments Friday, Feb. 23. Both say communication is the key to success.

With 25 years in law enforcement under his belt, Milwaukee interim Police Chief Alfonso Morales has pledged much of his life to public safety.

"That's the driver for me. Being committed to the people -- north side, south side, east side, west side," Morales said.

Interim Police Chief Alfonso Morales

As he laid out his vision for the police department Friday morning, Morales focused on transparency, improving morale and public trust.

"I am committed to re-establishing our relationships for those that are broken and the ones that aren't broken," Morales said. "We're going to continue our relationship and collaboration with you."

Morales is also pushing to update department training.

"Our training should be more on the evolution of public safety and getting ourselves more on the front end. It could be as simple as how we utilize our body cameras to simple communication," Morales explained.

Communication and bridging the gap is what interim Health Commissioner Patricia McManus is determined to accomplish in her tenure.

"I'm more hopeful in there than I was when I get in there," McManus said.

Interim Health Commissioner Patricia McManus

McManus' vision includes providing more health services and support around Milwaukee. But she said her immediate goals are addressing every aspect to the city's current lead controversy head on. "There are some things that need to be looked at," McManus said.

Both leaders know they're stepping into roles during difficult times -- but say they're dedicated to strengthening their departments, with the hopes of ultimately improving the city of Milwaukee.