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Engage Baltimore

Lt. Colonel Melvin T. Russell

Lt. Colonel Melvin T. Russell is Chief of the Community Partnership Division, Baltimore Police Department. Russell joined The Baltimore Police Department (BPD) in 1979 as a police cadet and graduated from the BPD academy in 1981 as the first and only African American class valedictorian.

Russell worked both as a uniform patrol and then an undercover officer for 20 years before re-emerging as an Eastern District Lieutenant in 2007. In this position, Russell turned the worse midnight patrol shift in the city to the best in 3 months and was promoted to Major of the Eastern District 11 months later. It was during this time as Major that Russell created the non-profit “Transformation Team” (TTT), a grassroots organization of community shareholders that are committed to working together to make a better Baltimore.

In January 2013, Russell was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and created the Community Partnership Division, which brings stakeholders together to begin to work towards the common goal of peace and prosperity for Baltimore City.