UI Public Safety director Scott Beckner announces retirement

Scott Beckner, who joined the UI in 2016, will retire in June. Beckner is best known for improving the design of Nite Ride to be more user-friendly and implementing the student security program.


Rin Swann, News Reporter

The University of Iowa announced Thursday that Scott Beckner, assistant vice president and director of the Public Safety Department, will retire after nearly 34 years of service in law enforcement. 

Beckner, who assumed his position at the UI in 2016, will retire in June. He will continue his duties as usual until a replacement can be found, the UI said in a statement. A specific date will be chosen for his retirement closer to that time, and more details will be released.

Among other initiatives, one of Beckner’s primary contributions to the UI included spearheading a partnership with the Information Technology Services to create a more user-friendly version of the late-night campus-driving service Nite Ride. 

In addition, he created the first formal security officer program, which employs around 100 students on campus and furthers connections between students and the police department, the release said.

“Working with students has always been my favorite part of this job, and I’m happy we’ve been able to build student-centered programs that help us improve the safety of our campus community,” Beckner said in a statement. “This has been the pinnacle of my career. I enjoyed working with the officers of this department and the partners throughout the county. It’s been an honor to serve as a member of the public safety team at the University of Iowa.”

Before his work at the UI, Beckner spent 18 years at Michigan State University Police Department in East Lansing. He also served as the Public Safety director and police chief at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, Georgia, and police chief at Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. 

UI Senior Vice President for Finance and Operations Rod Lehnertz said in a statement that Beckner has made his time at the UI a mission to improve safety services on campus and foster community with the students.

“He has listened to feedback from students, thought outside the box to develop solutions even during fiscally challenging years, and through the hard work of the team he led and partnerships with our neighboring municipal agencies, our campus is a safer and better place,” Lehnertz said. “We are grateful for his leadership.”