FBINAA - May 2022 catalog

Continued from "The Historian's Spotlight", on page 24

Carlton Irish , Sealy's community relations person and aide-de- camp during those years, vividly recalls one incident in Brooklyn where Sealy's presence was crucial in preventing bloodshed: "There was a disturbance in Brooklyn when a detective shot a young Black man on Ralph Avenue. There were street demon- strations with kids throwing Molotov cocktails, throwing bricks off roofs. Lloyd went to Ralph Avenue in full uniform with me to talk to some of the young people to tell them this was not the way to proceed. He started walking up Ralph Avenue and he had no helmet on or anything else. I told him, "There are things coming off the roofs and you're going to get killed." He said, "No, I don't think anything is going to happen. All we have to do is just be calm and you'll see everything will work out." I was frightened to death but I couldn't not walk with him. We walked up the street and lo and behold we didn't get hit and he was just as calm. It was just an incredible display of courage and a kind of belief that these were his people and they were not going to hurt him. It was just incred- ible. He talked to them and that night things calmed down." (4) Sealy's courage was not simply in the manner that he dealt with crowds, however. He also recognized the legitimate aspira - tions of the protestors and acted as a bridge between the people who wanted to change the system and those who had the power to effect that change. In late Spring of 1969, Sealy was approached to join the faculty at the College. It is not surprising, but very appropriate, that when Sealy resigned from the police department in August 1969, John Lindsay sent him a handwritten letter expressing his "profound thanks for his courage, firmness and decency." In his own summary of his accomplishments, Sealy said that his most important contribution to the department had been "making some of the men aware of the need to be more sensitive to the needs of the people and their communities." (5) The police department's loss was John Jay's gain. When Sealy joined the college as an Associate Professor of Law and Police Science in the Fall of 1969, he became the first African American in that department. The college had opened in the Fall of 1965, and Sealy's recruitment to the faculty was a major coup for a young college struggling for an identity and respect- ability. His colleagues in the Law and Police Science Department recalled that what he liked best about teaching was the contact that he had with the students, interacting with them and "open - ing their minds." He was particularly proud when students went on to graduate school or law school. (6) When Sealy came to John Jay, he devoted a good deal of thought and energy to the problem of relations between resi - dents of a community and the police officers who protect it. In The Community and the Police—Conflict or Cooperation? (a book he co-authored), he noted, "Police who continue to see themselves solely as law enforcers will remain at a distance from communities that are evolving a concept of the police that is grounded in the idea of community service." (7) In the book, Sealy asserted that real police work had to include "deep involvement in the community's problems that are due to lack of services, whether from government or from private parties." (8) These problems might include such things as tracking down lost wel - fare checks, arresting landlords who refuse to provide heat for their tenants, or helping to get a stoplight put on a particularly dangerous corner. Sealy understood long before others that a good police officer had to be part of the community in which he served. As Carlton Irish recalled, Sealy believed that "the police had to be part of the community and had to be perceived as more than a group of outsiders who were coming to regulate and control people in particular communities." (9)

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Leo Loughrey recalled that Sealy also believed that John Jay could serve an important function for the criminal justice system. The college would be a place where people within the criminal justice system, especially minorities, could get the edu - cation they needed to achieve leadership positions in the crimi- nal justice system. (10) In addition to providing career opportuni- ties, Carlton Irish remembers that Sealy believed that "education was what minority people and police officers, no matter what their color, needed." (11) At John Jay, Sealy quickly became one of the most influen - tial and respected Professors. In 1973, he became the director of the Criminal Justice Education component of a $1.5 million Advanced Institutional Development Program grant that sought to improve (and in many cases establish) lines of communication between John Jay and the criminal justice agencies and to con - duct research into the most productive curriculum for criminal justice education William Bracey, a friend and colleague on the police force, recalled that for Sealy joining the faculty of John Jay "was the ultimate." He liked his experiences as a police officer, but "he loved teaching and he loved John Jay." (12) For him, being with young people, in the classroom, in the cafeteria, in the halls was exciting, for they were the future and the hope. His visions, his integrity, his commitment to excellence have been enduring values that have continued to enrich the College over the years.

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