Who would figure that a jock and a self-described "nerd" would have so much in common?
Jim Brown, the former star running back for the Cleveland Browns, and D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams, a football fan, met recently to discuss Brown's idea to establish a youth management program for at-risk young people in the District.
Williams (D) was introduced to Brown last week by Rep. Patrick J. Kennedy (D-R.I.), who already is working with Brown's youth initiatives in Rhode Island, according to Max Brown, the mayor's legal counsel.
"We think there is potential to tie into programs for at-risk youth, like after-school programs, and see how we can use these programs to help youth develop the necessary skills to become productive citizens," said Max Brown, who is not related to the Hall of Fame running back.
He added that Jim Brown's program is worthy of consideration because it's not run by government, "so we could bring fresh ideas to dealing with problems and creative thinking and not be bound by bureaucratic structure."
Williams said he enjoyed meeting Jim Brown and recalled that he enjoyed watching Brown play football in the 1960s. He said Brown's program has merit.
"It is something that we explored that's being done in some other cities where he's taking at-risk youths and providing intervention," Williams said. "It's basically kind of readiness training. . . . It's [teaching] motivation, habits, attitudes, goal-setting, problem-solving, emotional control.
"We'll be fact-finding and making a determination," the mayor added. "It's got a lot of positive potential."
In the Footsteps of Bacon, Klein?
First there was the Bacon Rule. Now, there's "Doing a Klein."
For several years, the D.C. police department was in an awkward position when it came to disciplining officers because of what has become known as the Bacon Rule.
It's named after a former police official, Charles R. Bacon Jr., who once upon a time allegedly fired shots at his girlfriend with his service weapon. Bacon wasn't fired; he went on to become a deputy chief, the third-highest post in the department, before he retired.
Subsequently, several officers accused of unwarranted gunplay and other illicit activities--including one who was accused of firing his gun in a Georgetown bar--successfully challenged their dismissals by citing the Bacon Rule, which came to mean, "You can't fire me because you didn't fire Charlie Bacon."
A few weeks ago, Capt. Matthew Klein, a 10-year veteran who then was assigned to the department's 4th District as a patrol captain, put in his resignation, sources said. He was unhappy because he had not advanced to a more prestigious post. Klein met with Executive Assistant Police Chief Terrance W. Gainer, who promptly made him head of the department's Emergency Response Team.
Problem was, police officials had indicated the job would go to Capt. Willie Johnson, a veteran of more than 25 years and Klein's co-worker in the 4th District, sources said. Johnson apparently learned he wasn't getting the job when Klein started packing his boxes.
Now some of the department's most experienced officials, already bummed out by seeing Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey promote several younger officers, are even more down in the dumps. Several officials complained that it was unfair for Klein to be promoted because he complained to Gainer.
"Basically, being a good police administrator with a lot of experience who has behaved himself means nothing," one longtime official said. "Hard work stands for nothing."
Klein said in an interview that he had not resigned but that he had considered doing so before the job change. He said that he met with Gainer, at Gainer's request, and that they "spoke about several things," and that he had been promoted after that. Klein said that it was his impression that the job hadn't yet been assigned to Johnson but that he was familiar with rumors that Johnson was going to get it.
Gainer said in an interview that Klein was "burned out or burning out" in the district job and that he decided to promote him because "I see a spark there that I think we could use. He has experience in the Israeli army as an infantry person, and I think we can use that."
Gainer said he had spoken with Klein several times over the last several months and "had him in mind for this type of job" all along. He said police officials should do "less whining" and focus on their own responsibilities.
Johnson was away and could not be reached for comment.
Agency Leader Jordan Says Farewell
Sam Jordan, the District's point man in coordinating major events including everything from presidential inaugurations to the Million Man March, is leaving city government after 43 years.
The 64-year-old Jordan, who heads the city's Emergency Management Agency, is retiring. He began his government career in 1956 in the Recreation and Human Services departments, and he took over the Office of Emergency Preparedness in 1992, recently renamed the Emergency Management Agency. He has worked under mayors Marion Barry, Sharon Pratt Kelly and Anthony A. Williams. He was an adviser to the city's first mayor, Walter Washington.
For months, Jordan was among several holdovers from the Barry administration who were rumored to have been targeted by Williams for removal. In leaving, he joins former Barry aides Millicent D. Few, who left her job as the city's personnel director; Wayne Casey, the former deputy director of the Department of Human Services; and Deborah M. Royster, who was executive director of the office of cable television.
In 1997, Jordan received the Greater Washington Urban League's Whitney M. Young Jr. Award for community service. He is recognized throughout the District for being an activist who worked tirelessly to improve the quality of life here and for helping to stage several large events.
"If they're setting up something on Pennsylvania Avenue, Sam will be there scouting out the location and doing the logistics," one Jordan supporter said. "He doesn't just show up when the mayor arrives."
Jordan did have some legal problems last year, after an altercation with his live-in girlfriend. In March, he was charged with carrying a pistol without a license, possession of an unregistered firearm, possession of unregistered ammunition and simple assault--all misdemeanors. He was placed on probation for one year and ordered to undergo counseling.
Jordan said his legal troubles did not lead to his departure.
"I chose to retire," Jordan said. "I've got all kinds of job offers that will be much better financially with less tension, less stress. I'm just tired of running.
"It's been great," he added. "I'm in love with this city. You don't stay somewhere this long and not miss it."
Staff writer Yolanda Woodlee contributed to this report.