Following the State Police graduation ceremony, New Jersey Acting Attorney General John Hoffman told NJTV News Managing Editor Mike Schneider that the 153rd class is the most diverse.
Hoffman said that the most important aspect of the diverse State Police class is that the leadership is going to reflect the character and composition of the state. There were many evaluative procedures for the 153rd class to make sure that officials did a qualitative review of all of the applicants, he said.
Besides being a diverse class, diversity training, culture sensitivity and cultural awareness was introduced as well as having members of the Muslim Outreach Committee come in to teach classes, Hoffman said.
“It’s not just getting diverse people in. It’s making sure that we are teaching and institutionalizing the values of cultural sensitivity and making sure that we can relate to all of the different groups in the state. We are the most diverse state in the country. The State Police need to be able to relate to all of the different groups in the state,” Hoffman said.
More than 200 troopers are being introduced back into the state, so numbers are increasing, Hoffman said. There are about 2,700 troopers throughout the state and that number seems to be efficient and there is flexibility to deploy them around the state, he said.
When asked if the State Police force will increase its membership, Hoffman said, “It’ll grow if we find that it is the most effective use of the resources. We are not just going to grow the State Police for growth’s sake. We will grow it if we find that we can use it.”
As far as not being nominated by Gov. Chris Christie for New Jersey Attorney General, Hoffman said, “I am filled with nothing but pride and a sense of privilege and honor to have had the opportunity to hold this position. I’ve known Kevin [O’Dowd, Christie’s pick for the state’s next attorney general] for 10 years. He is a fantastic choice for an attorney general. He will make a great attorney general. I have spoken to him every day since he was appointed. As a citizen of New Jersey, I am very proud that he will be our attorney general.”
Once his time as acting attorney general is up, Hoffman said that he is thinking through a number of options of what to do next and will make a decision in his best interest.
“I am incredibly loyal to the state and to the administration,” Hoffman said.