Skip to Main Navigation | Skip to Content

University Relations

University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943


Vansell Chosen to Lead New National Center for Campus Safety

Contact: Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (April 7, 2014) – After providing leadership for the University of Central Missouri’s Department of Public Safety, Kim Vansell has an opportunity to impact public safety on college and university campuses across the nation. She has been named the inaugural director of the National Center for Campus Public Safety, based in Burlington, Vt.

Kim Vansell
Kim Vansell

Vansell, who serves as chief and director of the UCM Department of Public Safety, officially begins her new duties on May 1. She will continue working with the university throughout May to make the transition.

Margolis Healy, LLC announced Vansell’s new post in a news release, noting that the appointment comes after a national search. Through a bid process, the company was chosen to start the center, and was awarded a Department of Justice grant to help with its creation.

“Kim’s long tenure with the University of Central Missouri made her a leading candidate during our search,” said Gary Margolis, a former University of Vermont police chief who serves as managing partner for Margolis Healy.

“Kim’s deep experience with leadership initiatives, collaborative efforts, and professional organization involvement truly epitomized what we were looking for in a director for the National Center,” added Managing Partner Steven Healy, who is a former director of public safety at Princeton University. “We couldn’t be happier she has accepted the new position.”

The center works closely with the U.S. Department of Justice to provide a “one-stop shop for campus public safety,” with objectives that include serving as a resource for campus police chiefs, public safety directors, emergency managers, and key campus stakeholders.  According to its website,, the National Center brings together all forms of campus public safety, professional associations, advocacy organizations, community leaders and others to expand services to those who are charged with providing a safe environment on U.S. colleges and universities. It also serves as a think tank for identifying existing and emerging campus safety risks, developing resources and research, and information about best practices to benefit those who work to keep campuses safe.

As the founding director of National Center, Vansell said she is looking forward to using skills she developed over the years at UCM to help address public safety needs at colleges and universities.

“I look forward to engaging with campus public safety leaders and advocacy organizations across the nation to improve and expand resources to those charged with providing a a safe environment for students, employees, and visitors at our nation’s schools,” she said.

Vansell began her work at UCM as a part-time dispatcher in 1983, and became a full-time police officer in September 1984. After she was promoted to shift sergeant in April 1987, she was selected as police/community services sergeant in 1999, then became chief and director of public safety in March 2011.

She takes pride in having had the opportunity to work collaboratively with campus and community members on various issues impacting student and campus safety. The spirit of collaboration with the community has helped UCM achieve many successes, Vansell said, and she is grateful for the time she spent at Central Missouri.

“My education and career at UCM has been very rewarding. I can’t imagine having done anything else, anywhere else, that would have been a more perfect life experience,” she noted. “UCM is a community of caring, supportive, and future-focused learners and educators. I intend to continue to work alongside all the wonderful people at UCM and our state to improve safety on campuses from a national position.”