Reflections from Nlets Executive Director Steve Correll
Executive Director Steve Correll will be retiring at the end of 2019 after 18 plus years with Nlets. During that time Correll led Nlets to become a national leader in information sharing transitioning it from a proprietary niche law enforcement to a financially and technically secure enterprise that will exchange nearly 3 billion messages from over 130 differing data sets internationally by the end of 2019. During his time, he led numerous national committees and piloted new technologies while challenging the status quo at nearly every turn.
What does success mean to an organization like Nlets? I have asked myself this question quite often - and over the last 19 years the answer has changed. Quite often.
Approaching the Nlets timeline sort of like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, at first success was merely survival. In the beginning we were concerned about keeping the lights on, paying the rent and making payroll, our corporate physiological needs stage. Then when we solved our basic survival needs, we added to our corporate resources, built our building; hired highly skilled personnel as we met our corporate safety needs. We were not merely surviving, but we were beginning to flourish.
With the necessary resources and tools, we began to find our expanded place in the national and international information sharing as we began our corporate belonging phase where we had a clear new mission and the means to accomplish that new mission.
This phase of internal growth and external value to our community led us to be recognized by the community, and our good work brought attention to the reach and capability of Nlets which opened new doors to new opportunities and new customers and new successes. This was the recognition/ freedom stage. A place where we have the ability to do the work, the right tools, the reputation of getting the work done, and the freedom to do work that is important to our community.
Currently we live in that space where we are moving towards the pinnacle of the needs pyramid. We are moving to a corporate self-actualization where we are looking to become the most that we can be to you our community.
So we push ourselves. We begin to look deeper into the needs of the criminal justice community to see where Nlets, and our capabilities can fill voids that have always existed, or improve in areas that need our help. A national License Plate reader index, nationwide image sharing (drivers Photo’s, Tips and Leads), Interpol wanted persons, new international sharing with the UK, AU and NZ and so much more.
We’ve built a strong platform. We have the technology. We have the right people. We have the financial strength. And I believe we have the will to do more, to be more and to our community, to reach further and take risks to get the right data to the right people at the right time.
And Nlets does not exist in a vacuum. We know that Nlets works for all of you. That without each of you, the locals, the states and federal partners – without you Nlets is not needed, Nlets does not exist. There is no confusion in this. But it seems to me that Nlets is becoming the vehicle we can all use together to facilitate and accelerate a greater change across all of our agencies and jurisdictions. Nlets, following the membership driven strategic plan - can create change, drive change, and in many cases can even pay for that change. We continue to grow our Brodie Assistance Fund to give back to our members and make positive change.
This is new. This is exhilarating. And this is the Nlets we have become as we have climbed Maslow’s pyramid over the years. This is the Nlets that is now interested and committed in becoming all that it can be, to serve all of you.
Nlets is strong, and getting stronger. But there is so much left to do.