Matt Bostrom has more than 34 years of law enforcement experience including service as Police Officer, Sergeant, Lieutenant, Commander, Senior Commander, Chief of Staff, Assistant Chief of Operations, Assistant Chief of Support Services with the Saint Paul Police Department, and Ramsey County Sheriff. Matt was twice nominated as National Sheriff of the Year and both times he was awarded the Medal of Merit from the National Sheriffs’ Association. Some of his accomplishments include: reorganizing the department to improve effectiveness and efficiency by focusing on the vision, mission, values, and beliefs; co-founding the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council; launching professional standards, comprehensive training, and diverse hiring initiatives; and engaging with the community to build relationships and prevent crime.

The hallmark of his service as sheriff was a focus on increasing the level of trust between the community and police officers. Through listening to the community, he learned of their desire for police departments to hire for character and train for competence. In response, he launched a recruitment and hiring initiative that centered on selecting women and men who possessed four observable character traits: trustworthy, truthful, responsible, and respectful. This initiative has increased community trust and improved police officer work habits including sick time usage, discipline, and commendations. He is developing a replicable model for increasing community trust in the police by focusing on the type of personnel who are recruited into the field of policing and reinforcing excellent character within police agencies.

Matt received his formal education at the University of Northwestern (Bachelor of Science), University of Saint Thomas (Master of Arts), and Hamline University (Doctor of Public Administration). Matt is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy. Matt authored “The Influence of Education on Police Officer Work Habits” which was published in Police Chief, and he co-authored “Character-Based Police Officer Selection” for the United States Department of Justice. Additionally, he has been an adjunct professor at Saint Mary’s University, the University of Northwestern, and Hamline University.

Research projects