City Club of Chicago: Fraternal Order of Police President Kevin Graham
April 30, 2019
Kevin Graham – President – Fraternal Order of Police
As a Chicago police officer, Kevin Graham spent most of his time either as a patrol officer or walking the beat in Uptown. In his spare time, he also helped with Open Hand Chicago, which supplied meals to people with AIDS. He won an election to be the unit rep in the 23rd district. He then ran for the board of directors for the Fraternal Order of Police Chicago Lodge 7. After two terms as a trustee with Lodge #7, Graham ran and won first vice president of the Illinois Fraternal Order of Police in Springfield. When his term ended in the summer of 2016, he had already decided to run for president of the largest local lodge in the country, Chicago FOP #7. In the spring of 2017, Kevin won a runoff election against incumbent Dean Angelo. The Lodge is now immersed in a consent decree with a special monitor overseeing it. A federal judge has agreed that our collective bargaining agreement cannot be undermined, and that the City needs to bargain with us over changes according to Illinois state law and Illinois labor law.
Graham grew up in Skokie Illinois. His mother was an English teacher at Niles West High School, and his father was superintendent of schools in Morton Grove, District 70. Graham attended Emory Riddle University for aeronautical engineering. He has earned degrees in law-enforcement, public administration, and a master’s degree from Northwestern University in Public Policy. Before becoming a Chicago police officer in 1983, Kevin was hired as a suburban police officer and attended the Chicago Police Academy in a metro class. He had several assignments across Cook County, including patrol officer, detective supervisor and, one of his last assignments, writing the standard operating procedures for the Cook County Forest Preserve Police.
While at Northwestern University, Graham’s master’s thesis was helping the mentally ill in Cook County and using mental health courts to unclog the system, thereby giving help to the mentally ill, so the public servants in the criminal justice system didn’t clog up the court system with people who needed to be in the hospital instead of jail.