David Hilke: New Director of Campus Safety

On top of the rush that every beginning of the school year brings, like issuing parking permits and student identification cards, California Lutheran University has hired a new Director of Campus Safety, David Hilke as a replacement for Fred Miller who retired in the spring.

“The biggest thing that separated Cal Lutheran from the other institutions that I interviewed with was that I immediately felt welcomed the minute I stepped on campus,” Hilke said in an email interview.

With 12 years of experience in the safety and security field, Hilke came from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where he served as the director of Public Safety for La Roche College. 

“He brings in a fresh new outlook. I like the approach the department is taking,” Robert Sadeh, supervisor of campus safety, said.

“The campus safety officers have handled the transition to a new director very well.  The campus safety office has a great team mentality.  We have officers with diverse backgrounds that work well together to get the job done,” Hilke said.

“He is a very straightforward, but has a fun personality and I appreciate that from him. He’s always coming out of his office to say hi and cracking jokes,” Deanna Rodriguez, operations assistant, said.

Being one of the few females in the campus safety office, Rodriguez gave some insight as to what a typical morning look likes for the staff.

“We come in, get the office going, start up all the computers, make our coffee and they [the men] start talking about football,” Rodriguez said.

Hilke is another addition to the natural chemistry  the campus safety officers and staff share, boosting the excitement for the future.

“David [Hilke] is hearing our requests and is going out and pushing for them. He has an understanding of the demands on the staff and is trying to accommodate those demands,” Rodriguez said.

“I want my department to be known for going above and beyond the call of duty to serve the University’s needs,” Hilke said.  “This will include services and educational seminars offered to faculty, staff and students, maintaining a highly visible presence on campus, and ensuring that my staff is kept current on all safety and security related trainings and certifications.”

New services to look forward to at Cal Lutheran include a software called Rave Guardian where students can access features that will increase safety and aim to prevent sexual assaults.

“We’re working on testing out the kinks before we go live with it,” Rodriguez said.

While students, faculty and the Cal Lutheran community can look forward to the future of the university, campus safety is advancing in technology and training with the help of their new director.

“I plan to bring my 12 plus years of experience to Cal Lutheran and to utilize that experience to elevate the level of my department,” Hilke said.

Katy Lindor
Staff Writer
Published September 30th, 2015