Notre Dame police, fire and risk management departments to be aligned under new Office of Campus Safety

by Dennis Brown

Mike Seamon

The University of Notre Dame’s police, fire and risk management and safety departments will be aligned under a new Office of Campus Safety to be directed by Michael Seamon, who has been promoted to associate vice president.

An eight-member task force led by John Affleck-Graves, the University’s executive vice president, was created last October to examine Notre Dame’s current structure as well as the organizational models at others colleges and universities. Working in conjunction with an outside consultant, the committee made the recommendation for the realignment, which is effective Oct. 1. Seamon will report to Affleck-Graves.

“By positioning these three departments into one collaborative unit, an already world-class public safety organization at the University will be even better,” Affleck-Graves said. “The task force members found that bringing police and fire under the same leadership is increasingly the standard in higher education, and we believe this alignment will provide greater efficiency and enhance all safety-related services to Notre Dame students, faculty and staff.

“I am indebted to the members of the committee for their analysis and insight, and I look forward to working with Mike as he organizes this new office.”
The Notre Dame Security Police Department (NDSP) currently is in the Office of Student Affairs. Rev. Thomas P. Doyle, C.S.C., who became the University’s vice president for student affairs in June, said the move of NDSP from student affairs to campus safety is one component of an overall restructuring within his division.

“I have been fully involved in the analysis and consideration of this organizational change since my election as vice president last November, and I am absolutely confident that it will be of great benefit to the individual departments and to the campus as a whole,” Father Doyle said. “Through the transition and in the future, I look forward to maintaining a close association with Mike and the exceptional professionals who lead and staff our security police department.”

The Notre Dame Fire Department and the Risk Management and Safety Department will move from the Office of Business Operations.

“As a member of the task force, I was able to closely examine the benefits associated with restructuring,” said James Lyphout, vice president for business operations. “This consolidation will allow us to enhance the outstanding work that has been a hallmark of the fire and risk management teams.”

Seamon was appointed assistant vice president for university events and protocol in 2008 and a year later also became the University’s director of game-day operations. In his new position, he also will oversee the University’s emergency preparedness processes and continue to lead game-day initiatives, where he reports to the University’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.

Seamon previously served as executive assistant to Affleck-Graves, executive assistant to the vice president for finance, and assistant to the vice president for business operations.

A Notre Dame alumnus with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business, Seamon worked from 1995 to 1997 as the first director of sales and marketing – and one of the first three employees – for the Tampa Bay Rays baseball franchise. He was involved in activities related to stadium renovation, the sale of private suites and season tickets, design and marketing of team merchandise and other responsibilities.

While earning his master of business administration degree, Seamon served as an intern to the University’s associate athletic director and business manager and later became the department’s retail manager. He was head football manager during his senior year at Notre Dame.

NDSP is fully authorized as a police agency by the state of Indiana. The department employs both sworn police officers and non-sworn security officers who patrol campus and respond to emergencies. Additional staff members work as security monitors or in other support positions in the department. Notre Dame police officers complete state mandated training requirements established for law enforcement officers and have the same legal authority as any other police officer in Indiana.

Established in 1879, the Notre Dame Fire Department is a full-service life-safety agency that has evolved from volunteers responding when the alarm sounded to a professional department that seeks to prevent fires through public education, fire code inspections and fire protection system maintenance. The department responds to some 1,300 fire, medical and other emergency calls annually.

The Risk Management and Safety Department combines the programs and services of the technical disciplines of environmental health and safety with risk control and risk transfer as they relate to hazards and loss exposure associated with the University’s teaching, research and public service. The staff manages and coordinates the University’s effort to address these risks through programs for risk management and insurance, health and safety, and environmental compliance.

Contact: Dennis Brown, University spokesman and assistant vice president for public information and communications, 574-631-8696