Kenneth L. Morckel has served as Director of the Ohio Department of Public Safety (ODPS) since January 2003. In this cabinet-level position, Director Morckel advises the Governor on issues relating to the eight divisions within ODPS. These divisions include Homeland Security, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Bureau of Motor Vehicles, Emergency Management Agency, Emergency Medical Services, Ohio Investigative Unit, Criminal Justice Services and Administration.
As Director of Public Safety, Director Morckel chairs the State of Ohio Security Task Force, which is a 23-member committee that advises the Governor on strategies for coordinating and strengthening Ohio's homeland security initiatives. Director Morckel serves as Ohio's point of contact to U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and has become a high-profile, nationally-recognized and respected leader on homeland security issues. He was appointed to the International Association of Chiefs of Police's Homeland Security Committee in 2003 and serves as Ohio’s representative on the Governors’ Homeland Security Advisors Council, which was created by the National Governors Association. Director Morckel also received the prestigious “Legacy Award” from the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police in 2006 for his significant accomplishments in advancing Ohio’s homeland security initiatives.
Under Director Morckel’s leadership, Ohio has made tremendous progress in strengthening its capabilities to prevent, protect, respond to and recover from potential acts of terrorism. Director Morckel has focused on forming key partnerships to develop and implement innovative programs to vastly improve interoperable communications and information-sharing capabilities for Ohio’s law enforcement officers, fire services and EMS providers.
Because of Director Morckel’s passion for the safety and security of Ohioans, the Division of Homeland Security has seen extraordinary growth and advancement in a short period of time. The Division has established an information-sharing center involving more than 30 agencies from state and federal government, law enforcement and fire services. Ohio Homeland Security has also created a Multicultural Relations Office – one of the first of its kind in the nation – to promote cooperation, mutual respect and harmony among Ohio’s diverse communities and law enforcement agencies.
Like the Division of Homeland Security, other divisions within the Ohio Department of Public Safety have also made significant advances to promote safety and improve services to the citizens of Ohio. The Ohio State Highway Patrol has set an ambitious goal of reducing traffic crash deaths in Ohio to one per 100 million vehicle miles traveled by the end of 2007. In another effort to improve traffic safety, Director Morckel was a leading force in developing and implementing Ohio Quick Clear, this is a program coordinating all emergency responders to provide quick clearance of crash scenes and other highway incidents to reduce congestion. Through OPLATES.com, thousands more Ohioans are using the Internet to conduct BMV-related business each year. The Ohio Emergency Management Agency’s ongoing commitment to disaster planning and preparedness enabled thousands of Ohioans to play a significant role in the Hurricane Katrina response and recovery effort.
Prior to being named Public Safety Director, Morckel served nearly 29 years in the Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSHP) and was Superintendent of the OSHP from June 2000 through January 2003. He is a graduate of the FBI's National Executive Institute and the Southern Police Institute Command Officer Development Course at the University of Louisville. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in human resource management and organizational leadership from Franklin University. A native of Carrollton, Director Morckel lives in Dublin with his wife, Sandy. He has two grown children and three grandchildren.