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2022 City News Releases

Posted on: January 7, 2022

Cris Swaters named Springfield Police Department Public Affairs Officer


SwatersHeadshotCris Swaters has been named public affairs officer for Springfield Police Department. She is part of the City of Springfield’s Department of Public Information and Civic Engagement and serves as the primary contact for the police department's media programs, inquiries and news releases. Under the direction of the City’s Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement Cora Scott and Police Chief Paul Williams, Swaters will develop, coordinate and administer communication and marketing programs to promote the department's programs and services.

Swaters has a bachelor of science in public relations and a master of arts in communication from Missouri State University and most recently served as the social media specialist at City Utilities of Springfield (CU), where she managed the utility’s busy social media channels and managed the brand voice across online platforms. 

"Communication with the public and news media is an integral part of engaging with Springfield's citizens," Swaters said. "Having come from City Utilities of Springfield as their social media specialist, I am excited to continue serving the public at the Springfield Police Department, and look forward to working with Chief Williams and the City's Department of Public Information and Civic Engagement." 

Prior to joining CU in 2016, she served as a communications coordinator for White River Valley Electric Cooperative and completed marketing internships at BluCurrent Credit Union and Dickerson Park Zoo. Swaters is also currently an adjunct professor at Southwest Baptist University, teaching online, upper-level courses: writing for communicators, crisis communications, and non-profit public relations. 

“We are happy to have Cris on our team and are looking forward to her expanding SPD’s online and social media presence, as well as working on civic engagement and retention and recruitment initiatives for SPD,” said Scott. “She increased the levels of engagement at CU considerably and brings a lot of new ideas to the SPD PAO role.” 

“The role of the Public Affairs Officer (PAO) is a vital piece in our overall communication strategy, and she will serve as the primary point of contact for both public and media inquiries,” said Police Chief Paul Williams. “Building on the work of previous PAOs, Cris will continue to  enhance our efforts to engage with our citizens. Having an experienced professional in this role is essential.” 

Swaters will become SPD PAO effective Jan. 24.  

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For more information, contact Cora Scott at 417-864-1009 or Police Chief Paul Williams at 417-864-1780.

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