The CHP has a lot of innovative thinkers in the ranks. We also have a lot of tradition. Some things stay static because “that’s the way it has always been.” Dan Locatelli from the Academy staff is a thinker taking on a tradition.
We are all familiar with the bookshelves in the area between the Staff Office and the PX at the Academy. Or maybe not, as it seems to be one of the most ignored areas in the facility. It is currently one of those places that people walk by without really seeing. It is filled with books dating back to Gutenberg. I’m a book guy, and even I never looked at them. As a cadet, the thought must be if you have time to read this stuff, you must be all learned out. The books on the shelves were mostly old paperbacks and Reader’s Digest Condensed books. The Academy has decided to join with the CHP Museum to make that space a little more interesting.
The initial plan is to keep the center section pretty much as it is to showcase the last class to graduate. An exhibit like that can serve to inspire the cadets in training and, for visitors, highlight the work that goes on. The space on either side will be turned into changeable spaces for temporary exhibits. For example, a Christmas exhibit may feature the recent Christmas video put out by COMR or display a collection of Christmas posters put out by LA Area 2 in the 1940s. The 50th anniversary of the first academy class to include female cadets is approaching. A timely display to honor those pioneers would demonstrate how far the department has come. The museum has some collections of items that belong to individual officers. A display highlighting an individual will emphasize that the CHP is built on the stories of real people. I can also see a display showcasing the Academy itself and the people who work there. The possibilities are limitless. This will be a display area for the Academy, presented with the help of the CHP Museum. Academy personnel are already at work to take out the old shelving and refurbish the area to bring it into this century.
A treasure from the files
APB Article Rick Mattos, Chair, CHP Museum