Shield Institute Instructors

We offer an impressive lineup of nationally recognized instructors. 


Based on surveys of law enforcement executive needs for first line supervisors, as well as various contemporary issues in our state and around the country, the following are some of the topics that will be covered:

  • Leadership

  • Emotional Intelligence

  • Conflict Management

  • Coaching and Mentoring

  • Officer Wellness to include Police Suicide awareness and prevention

  • Risk Management

  • Laws governing supervision and 6 th circuit Court decisions.

  • Discipline and Discharge


David Harvey M.P.A.
Past MCOLES Director
Chief Operations Office  

David is the former MCOLES Director and Police Chief in Garden City Michigan. After his retirement as Chief in Garden City, he later found a career as City Manager in Garden City, putting to use his Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Michigan.  


Throughout his law enforcement career, he has held positions in several units such as patrol, narcotics investigations and crime prevention.  Prior to his role as Chief at both Garden City and Detroit Metropolitan Airport, he served the ranks of Detective Sergeant and Lieutenant.  David has served as an instructor in both Firearms and OUIL to name a few.  


In addition to his work with Shield Leadership, David continues his passion with a wide array of experiences to include overseeing law enforcement projects in Nigeria, Kosovo, Serbia and has served as keynote speaker for a law enforcement conference in Columbia.   

David continues his passion giving back to law enforcement education, having served as both an Adjunct Instructor and Assistant Professor for the past twenty years with his Alma Mater, Madonna University, where he received his B.A. in Criminal Justice. 

Kymberli Flanagan, Ph.D.

Chief Education Officer

Dr. Flanagan is a first generation college student that always hoped for a career in law enforcement.  While paths led her to a degree in Business and decades long work in Hospitality Management, her graduate degrees led her to curriculum development, instructional design and educational leadership in vocational subjects. Her research interests are in the education of adult learners and cross generational workplaces.


Dr. Flanagan currently works at Ferris State University as a faculty member in the College of Business as well as being the program advisor for business programs at the Grand Rapids campus. Her passion for program development, accreditation process, curriculum building and adult learners led her to this work with Shield Leadership Institute.

Darnell Blackburn


Blackburn has been actively involved in law enforcement for more than 27 years. He started his professional law enforcement career as a Michigan State University police officer serving a diverse student body population. He later served as a patrol officer for the Auburn Hills Police Department and gained hands-on experience working as a community police officer, undercover narcotics detective and investigator.

For the past 16 years, Blackburn has worked for the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards. The commission is nationally recognized as a leader in the development of training and ethical standards for law enforcement officers. Blackburn also serves as an adjunct professor at Macomb Community College and is the founder/creator of the "Be the Change" initiative, an effort to help encourage more diversity within the law enforcement community.

His training and consulting service is centered on empowering people by enhancing their
communication skills to adequately handle a vast array of situations. Blackburn says research
shows that a well-trained staff is imperative to building a quality customer service-driven
business, and learning how to effectively communicate and respond in critical incidents are key to ensuring that such incidents have positive outcomes.

Chaplain David R Edwards



Chaplain David R. Edwards is the president of Humanizing the Badge’s nonprofit organization, leading their team of peer support personnel, and he is also the author of the Call for Backup Suicide Awareness and Prevention program. He is an ordained minister, licensed social worker, and holds board certifications as a pastoral counselor and crisis response chaplain. In addition to his work with Humanizing the Badge, David also teaches in the social work department of Michigan’s largest evangelical Christian university, serves as the lead chaplain for the Taylor, Michigan Police Department, is an approved instructor with the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, and is a member of the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association. He is also a member of the American Association of Experts in Traumatic Stress, and the Association of Traumatic Stress Specialists. As a surviving parent of a 2010 line-of-duty death, David’s passion is to help first responders and their families handle the unique challenges they face. He also loves being affectionately known as “Pa” to his grandchildren.


David’s live audiences have included officers from several jurisdictions in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, North Dakota, North Carolina, Missouri, Maryland, Texas, Arkansas,
Alabama, Florida, Oregon, Idaho, Texas, and Washington. Attendees have also included agents from the U.S. Courts, U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Border Patrol, the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command, U.S. Army Military Police, and the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

Maggie Edwards


In 1982, Maggie began her college education by attending Kalamazoo Valley

Community College pursuing an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement.

She was awarded the degree and eligibility for police certification in 1984.

In 1985 she began her law enforcement career as a police officer for both the city of Norton

Shores and the city of Montague.


Five years later Maggie began working on her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice at GVSU. At that time Maggie also accepted a position with the State of Michigan in the Department of Social Services while continuing her career as a police officer part time.


In 1997 she accepted a position in the Attorney General’s office as a special agent investigator for their Health Care Fraud Division. In 2001 Maggie transferred to the Department of State Police, Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) as a field representative. She worked closely with the seven police academies on the Western side of Michigan as well as all police agencies and officers in the same area.


Later, Maggie pursued and received her Master in Criminal Justice Administration degree

from Ferris State University. She began teaching criminal justice classes for both

Muskegon Community College and Ferris State University. After leaving MCOLES in

2010, Maggie accepted a full time position with Ferris State University as

Faculty/Advisor. Maggie retired in May of this year and looks forward to spending time with her husband who also retired from Law Enforcement.

Tim Gibbons


Garden City Police Chief Tim Gibbons joined the Garden City Police Department in 2002. In
2008 and 2009, he was a member of the elite multi-jurisdictional task force, Metro Street
Enforcement Team, which operated in Garden City, Wayne-Westland and Inkster to target
major crimes and narcotics incidents.
  He returned to road patrol duties and was promoted to sergeant in 2011. He also served as an entry team member and a scout/sniper on the Garden City Police Department Emergency Response Team.

Gibbons, who held a bachelor’s degree from Eastern Michigan University with a double
major in public law and government and psychology, enrolled in Western Michigan
University’s Cooley Law School in 2008 and emerged with a law degree in 2013. He graduated magna cum laude and ranked 28th in a class of 371.


Gibbons earned numerous awards, including Police Officer of the Year in 2014. While
serving as sergeant, he developed and implemented the department’s hazardous
driving detail, which was a program that uses statistical information to target problem
traffic areas with high accident rates. The program reduced accident and crime rates in
the targeted area.


Gibbons, who was born in Garden City and is a founding member of Michigan Law
Enforcement Training Associates where he serves as an instructing attorney providing
in-service police legal instruction and policy agency advisement focusing laws and
policies concerning police discipline and discharge, use of force, officer involved shootings and the use of Taser.

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Website  by Jessica Mekkes

Shield Leadership Institute

PO Box 904

Grandville, MI 49468


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