Fayette County

Beatty adjusts to slower pace in his new job

This summer, Anthany Beatty took a weeklong vacation to the Big Apple with his wife, their two sons and their wives, and his two grandchildren.

The trip — on which they visited the Statue of Liberty and watched the musical Mary Poppins — was uninterrupted.

It was a blessing, considering vacations were rare during the seven years Beatty was Lexington police chief.

"The two that I can remember going on, we actually ended up coming back early because something went on in the city and he just felt like he needed to come back," his wife, Eunice, recalled.

Anthany Beatty joined the University of Kentucky's staff as assistant vice president of public safety in January. He says he welcomes the slower workdays and relishes the unfamiliar spare time he has to spend with family.

These days his phone isn't buzzing every 10 minutes with calls, text messages and e-mails. As he settled into the new gig, Beatty says, he often reached for the phone to make sure it was working.

Eunice Beatty, a retired professor, said she understood what her husband's job entailed. But the phone used to ring at night and during dinner, so it's been nice having more privacy.

She said her husband has always had an easygoing personality, even when he was chief. But lately people have complimented his appearance.

"He did have this look of being under a lot of stress," she explained.

Beatty still works with the International Association of Chiefs of Police and has been involved in preparing for the Black Law Enforcement Executives convention, which will be held in Lexington in 2011.

On most days, Beatty attends meetings with representatives from the departments that report to him: the UK Police Department, Parking and Transportation, Environmental Health and Safety and Emergency Management.

And he stays abreast of new technologies and best practices in campus security by communicating with his counterparts at other universities and reading academic journals.

His days typically aren't as long, granting time for family and other activities such as raising money for the Anthany and Eunice Beatty Foundation, a non-profit with a mission to help youths overcome obstacles and embrace opportunities.

"It's been a win-win for me," he said.

While Beatty has some newfound time, he's also missing a few things: The 20-pound belt, equipped with essential tools such as handcuffs and a firearm. He no longer drives a police cruiser.

And without a police uniform he must decide what to wear to work every morning.

"The adjustment was getting used to the quietness and getting used to having time to think through things ... rather than just reacting to things," Beatty said, seated at a table in a spacious office at Peterson Service Building.

It's clear Beatty has been busy. Plastic storage bins filled with memorabilia from 34 years with Lexington police and other items he carried from his office at Lexington police headquarters haven't been unpacked.

He said he has faced an exciting challenge, learning about the various departments that report to him and discussing ways to advance campus security. He said one of his first responsibilities will be hiring a campus police chief, but first he's had to learn about that department's mission.

Before accepting the UK job, Beatty viewed campus security as an issue related to crime and police.

"It's much bigger than that," he said. "The issues on campus dealing with crime and violence — the things that we read about a lot in the newspaper and see in the media — are there. But as important is that we can get people parked and moved around the campus safely and conveniently."

Beatty said all the departments he oversees, including Environmental Health and Safety, which deals with chemicals not found in households, are involved in keeping the campus safe.

In fact, Parking and Transportation might be the most challenging area to manage, said Beatty's immediate supervisor, Frank Butler. YetBeatty has already made strides in that area.

Butler, executive vice president for finance and administration, said the university has always had problems with traffic flow and parking at the start of the term, and he usually receives several phone calls about problems. This year was different. He has received few — if any — complaints.

"I think this year has been the smoothest we've ever had in the history of the institution," Butler said.

Beatty said he's working to create a more uniform method of securing buildings on campus.

And he plans to meet with representatives from his departments and Lexington police to demonstrate how each area interacts. Butler said the relationship Beatty is developing between the city and university was one of the primary reasons the campus wanted him for the job.

"I think that will be one of his early accomplishments," Butler said.

Beatty, who sometimes learns about major events on TV or in the newspaper now — another awkward result of his new stomping ground — has visited with Lexington police since he started at UK and thinks the new leadership will also get much accomplished.

"Chief (Ronnie) Bastin and the new administration down there will keep things going along very well," Beatty said. "I'm very confident in that."