After the Webinar: Professional Certification for Law Enforcement Planners. Q&A with Cassie Johnson

Webinar presenter Cassie Johnson answered a number of your questions after her presentation, Professional Certification for Law Enforcement Planners. Here are just a few of her responses.


Audience Question: There were a lot of things that you’ve touched on that many of us would never think about as being associated with planning like the communications and social media, do you have a lot of PIOs there at IALEP and how does IALEP support those functionalities? 

Cassie Johnson: We don’t necessarily have a lot of PIOs specifically in their job titles. But I think that’s because we are not being as open as we could be, I guess, that that is a function within our wheelhouse and so my goal with the executive board is that we really brought in what people would view as a planner. Part of that is why we are here today in this webinar. We had a conference session last September when we were in Cleveland about Social Media Management. Katie Nelson from Mountain View PD actually did a webinar with us on Justice Clearinghouse that was part of our conference session. She brought in her work with Social Media and she is a PIO of that department and I think that she can see that there’s going to be more people who are communicating out in those ways. Social Media is really a fast-changing function in Law Enforcement and the policies and the programs and the development of those things are really integral to our organization so we would love to include more PIOs in IALEP and see how we can support them with additional training. Including it more in our materials and our training concepts and really talking about it a little bit more. That’s something we would like to see grow in our organization as we move forward.



Audience Question: Did you say you get free access to Justice Clearinghouse as part of an IALEP membership? Can you repeat that? 

Cassie Johnson: I sure did. For your membership, that includes our partnership with Justice Clearinghouse and so you do get the full access to the library of amazing resources. And with that: we also ask our members to help support the great library of training here with Justice Clearinghouse and share your expertise and do presentations on behalf of IALEP with Justice Clearinghouse. So it’s really a great relationship and we’re very fortunate to have it. We’ve had it for a couple of years now and we are really excited to continue that moving forward into the future. So $50 gives you IALEP and Justice Clearinghouse.



Audience Question: Can someone be part of IALEP. if they’re not in law enforcement? Let’s say they do one of these Planning Functions but they do so in probation or prosecution or courts or EMS. Do you have to be in Law Enforcement or Criminal Justice in general?  

Cassie Johnson: I read it as Criminal Justice in general. I think that we have partnerships with all those areas. If you’re in the government realm and the justice field, let’s have a conversation. You can email That’s our office manager. You can ask any questions and we can always talk through membership questions there as well.



Audience Question: Is IALEP for Federal Law Enforcement Professionals as well?

Cassie Johnson: Yes, it is. We’ve had academics in our organization that are in the Criminal Justice Research world, we have State, we have Federal. I mean, it’s open for anybody who’s interested in this area. We’ve been talking a lot about students, work and how can we bring up the next generation of Law Enforcement Planners. Absolutely.



Audience Question: Are certain jobs in law enforcement requiring a certification in Planning to get those jobs? 

Cassie Johnson: I have not seen any positions that require a certification. However, I’ve seen a lot that “it” is preferred. It’s included in the job description. I know it was included in my job description. I don’t know any organization that are doing any requirements or asking that their employees go but it really is a great resource [for employment]. Support your organizations because we are at the forefront of innovations and current practices and then you can support your own information development as well on that.



Audience Question: Is certification in Planning, an IALEP certification, is it transferrable to other professions? So if they wanted to leave Government or Law Enforcement and go to a corporation or something, is it transferrable?  

Cassie Johnson: Yes. You can take it with you but you have to maybe explain what it is to another organization. But the skillset that you need and the competencies that you’ve shown will still carry through. The Professional Certification will stay with your title. It’s the same as if I were to have my PMP, Project Management Professional, I can take that with me to another industry. It depends on how relevant I suppose it would be at that moment. I think that the work behind the certification that you have to support and document, that will carry you anywhere and that will support you in any industry.



Audience Question: Realistically, how long does it take to get your IALEP Certification? 

Cassie Johnson: It depends. The basic has a one-year requirement in a planning role with an organization. Advanced requires 5 years of experience with a  law enforcement planning function or that type of similar function. I was able to apply for my Advanced when I hit my five year anniversary. But for some people, it depends on the breadth of your project scope or your experiences. But the main requirement is that one-year and five-year.



Audience Question: What kind of software do you utilize to convert financial documentation from PDF to Excel or similar types of information? 

Cassie Johnson: If I’m understanding the question correctly, what I did when I was combining all my documentation to support my application, I used PDF, I used Excel, I used Word document and I used a PDF Pro (Adobe PRO) to make one big binder. I was able to drop in all those different document formats into one PDF document. Now, if you don’t have that system or software, we can accept information in other ways. You can send us documentation with individual documents. It’s just one clean way to make sure everything is in there if it’s in one PDF document.



Audience Question: Can non-US citizens also join IALEP? 

Cassie Johnson: Absolutely. We are an international organization. We would love to have folks from all over the world as part of IALEP because of the experience and the expertise is unparalleled. We’re all in this together. We all have similar topics that we’re working on. Our mission is the same in law enforcement across the world: to keep people safe. We would love to have people from various backgrounds and expertise and experiences in our organization.


Click Here to Watch a Recording of Professional Certification for Law Enforcement Planners



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