By Anne O’Connor
TOWNSEND — Kym Craven founded Public Safety Strategies Group in 1994. The Townsend-based consulting firm works with government organizations ranging in size from small-town departments to federal agencies.
In December, they completed a review of the Boston Police Department and made recommendations in several broad areas of police operations.
Q: You wrote grants and worked in management for the Lowell Police Department. How did that job lead you to establish what is now an internationally-known firm?
A: I got requests to help write grants and develop programs. It grew and grew. I said, “I’m going to make a career of this.”
Q: What were your original career goals?
A: I thought my career would be full-time law enforcement.
Q: How did starting PSSG fit in with those plans?
A: Opening the company is what my contribution was going to be.
Q: What does your firm do?
A: Interviews, (data) analysis, research best practices. We break our findings and recommendations into a timeline.
Q: Why do departments hire you instead of doing it themselves?
A: It’s the ability for municipalities to hire a research team that doesn’t have to attend to the daily work that’s really, really helpful.
Q: What is one of the most gratifying things you’ve done professionally?
A: Starting to work with some major cities as a female in a primarily male profession. I certainly was the underdog.
Q: You’ve worked with agencies of all sizes in the United States. How did your experience translate into working with international clients visiting the states?
A: It’s really different. Building that capacity internationally is certainly a challenge. We learned just as much from them as they learned from us.
Q: What is the best part of your job?
A: It’s really the totality of it. Some of the smallest things that we do are sometimes the most gratifying.
Q: Why is your business headquartered in Townsend?
A: We moved as a family to Townsend in the mid ’70s. I split my time between Townsend and Lyndeborough, N.H.
Q: Why did you want to do this interview?
A: I’d been away a lot. It’s nice to connect with the community. It’s just nice to share some good news.
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