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John Harrington

John Harrington is the chief public safety advisor for The Axtell Group. 

He brings a wealth of experience, knowledge and success to his role in helping our law enforcement partners identify and overcome barriers to success. 

He's a former police officer, police chief, state public safety commissioner and state senator. 

Chief Public Safety Advisor 

John Harrington, the former Commissioner for the Department of Public Safety for Minnesota, was appointed by Governor Tim Walz in January 2019 and served until January 2023.


Before becoming the Commissioner of Public Safety, Harrington served as the Chief of the Metro Transit Police from 2012 to 2019, helping to create the Homeless Action Team and increasing the diversity of the agency's staff from 5 percent to 50 percent.


Since beginning his career in 1977, Harrington has dedicated his professional life to public service. He is a former member of the Minnesota Senate and the former chief of police for the City of St. Paul, where he served from 2004 to 2010. As the St. Paul police chief, he tackled some of the city's most challenging problems, developing programs that significantly reduced domestic violence and gang involvement. 

In addition, he is a founder of Ujamaa Place, which provides holistic transformation for young African American men experiencing inequity at the intersection of race and poverty. 


He is currently working on his doctorate in the Administration of Justice at Walden University

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