May News: N. Berkeley BART Open House, Police Chief Appointment & More

Hi Neighbor,

Happy May!

I wanted to remind you that the selected N. Berkeley BART development team will be hosting an open house this Wed., May 10 and you may drop in anytime from 6 to 8 p.m. at the N. Berkeley Senior Center (1901 Hearst). They will be seeking your input on a variety of issues listed in the flyer below.

Light refreshments and children’s activities will be available. If you require any special accommodations, please e-mail as soon as possible.

Also, please SAVE THE DATE for my next Drop-In Meeting: Tues., May 30 from 5-6 p.m. at the Ohlone Park playground picnic table (near Hearst and McGee).

In this newsletter:

May 9: Council Considers Permanent Appointment of Jennifer Louis as Police Chief

The Berkeley Police Department is experiencing a severe staffing crisis, with fewer than 120 officers available for full duty out of a total authorized count of 181 officers. Last month, the department shifted from a 16-beat structure to 14 beats to ensure that beats don’t go empty. At the same time, certain violent crimes and property crimes are on the rise.

Jennifer Louis, Interim Police Chief

Jennifer Louis has successfully served as our City’s Interim Police Chief for more than two years. Tomorrow, May 9, the City Council will consider the City Manager’s recommendation to permanently appoint Jennifer Louis as our City’s Police Chief.

Berkeley Police Sergeant Joe LeDoux, president of the Berkeley Police Association, wrote a May 4 letter to the Council supporting the permanent appointment of Jennifer Louis, in which he in part described staffing and morale concerns:

Jennifer Louis has served with distinction as our Interim Police Chief since March 2021, which is much longer than a typical interim appointment of six months. The City Manager initially delayed a decision on her permanent appointment pending the results of an ongoing unrelated investigation. However, none of the alleged conduct happened under Louis’s supervision. I have full confidence in Interim Chief Jennifer Louis to serve as our permanent chief, as she has done so successfully for more than two years. If you wish to express your support for Jennifer Louis, you can send an e-mail to: and use or adapt the following template:

Dear Mayor and Members of the City Council:

I am writing to urge you to confirm Interim Chief Jennifer Louis as the permanent Police Chief for the City of Berkeley.

She has dedicated 23 years to our community and served as your Interim Chief for the past two years. She also has the support of the officers in the Police Department. She has demonstrated and proven her abilities and qualifications as a leader.

Please act decisively to confirm her permanent appointment at the May 9th City Council meeting.

Thank you,


Gilman Street Closed Between Second and Fourth Streets Through Late June

The California Department of Transportation has closed Gilman Street between Second and Fourth streets through late June to accommodate work on a roundabout to enhance safety and ease congestion.During the closure, access to businesses will be maintained and detours will be provided.