ALEXANDRIA, Va. – (July 13, 2009) – The National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE), will hold their 33rd Annual Training Conference and Exhibition in Norfolk, Virginia, July 25-31, 2009. The theme of this year’s conference is “Noble’s Continuous Journey for Justice: Leading the Way through Action.”

Some of the most crucial issues challenging the law enforcement community today, such as racial profiling, community-oriented policing, excessive force, domestic and youth violence will be examined at this year’s conference.   Conference attendees will also address concerns in areas of leadership, organizational management, resource management and technology.

This year’s conference chairperson and host is Bruce Marquis, Chief of Police, City of Norfolk.  According to Marquis, “the theme of this year’s NOBLE Conference is a subtle, yet serious reminder of the constant charge to promote justice and equity.  It suggests by definition of ‘Journey,’ the work of NOBLE members, while steadfast and faithful must be of a continuous and determined stride. The actions and initiatives of our membership have not been without labor, however a labor of commitment and love for the communities we serve world-wide. NOBLE has recognized significant and positive changes in law enforcement, as a result of programs created that address community policing, racial and religious harassment, victims’ assistance and youth.”

NOBLE’s annual training conference is designed to further the exchange of professional information through attendee participation in the many relevant workshop discussions on topics that include cultural diversity training, domestic violence, sexual harassment, crisis management, managing a diverse workforce, computer technology, community policing, etc.

This year, approximately 1,500 top-level executives, primarily chief law enforcement officers and administrators representing federal, state, county and local municipal agencies throughout the nation are expected in Norfolk for the six day conference. Both civilian and sworn members, retired and active, will attend. Also participating will be law enforcement personnel for universities and colleges, and practitioners working in corrections.

“The NOBLE Annual Training Conference provides law enforcement executives nationwide with an opportunity to share information, refine skills and focus on best practices that they can take back to their individual departments. The conference provides a valuable and essential networking and training forum, and we are pleased to hold this year’s conference in Norfolk,” said Jessie Lee, NOBLE Executive Director. “The city of Norfolk was chosen not only because of their powerful presentation and what the city had to offer, but for their ability to bring together the law enforcement communities in southern and eastern Virginia, truly representing the community concept that NOBLE has fostered since its conception.

Additional information about the 2009 conference and about the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives can be found at

The National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) serves as the conscience of law enforcement by being committed to justice by action.  NOBLE represents over 3,000 members nationwide, primarily African-American chief executive officers of law enforcement agencies at federal, state, county and municipal levels, other law enforcement administrators, and criminal justice practitioners.

More on the Issues:

Racial Profiling

Law enforcement’s denial and refusal to seriously address the critical issue of racial profiling has led to the deterioration of public trust and confidence in the modern criminal justice system, straining both police and community relations.  NOBLE is adamant that this issue commands immediate response from police agencies nationwide, and that strategies must be developed to eliminate the practice of racial profiling.

Police Brutality

Actions falling under the general heading of police brutality, as well as excessive and unnecessary force ranges in severity from verbal intimidation to homicide. The consequences are infinite, and are detrimental to the effectiveness and efficiency necessary for police officers to carry out their responsibilities. Additionally, the resulting tension and chaos created in the offended communities can have cataclysmic repercussions. NOBLE has condemned the use of excessive force, both at home and abroad, as a violation of civil rights.

Community-Oriented Policing

Community-oriented policing has been identified by NOBLE as a necessary and vital tool in law enforcement. Community-oriented policing is defined as a policing philosophy that promotes and supports organizational strategies to address the causes and reduce the fear of crime and social disorder through problem-solving tactics and police-community partnerships. NOBLE fully supports improvements that encourage positive direct citizen-to-officer encounters.

About Conference Officials:

Norfolk Police Chief Bruce P. Marquis, Ed.D., Conference Chairperson, joined the Norfolk, Virginia police department after 28 years of diverse law enforcement experience.

A special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, from 1984 until 1994, Marquis investigated violations of federal statutes such as white-collar crime, violent crimes, and crimes committed by organized street gangs; and was as a member of the Fugitive Task Force. He also served as regional recruitment specialist, Equal Opportunity counselor and community outreach liaison for the FBI.

Prior to joining the FBI, Marquis was a member of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Committee, serving as a senior security manager, directly responsible for managing the activities of 1,400 employees; and coordinating Olympic security measures with local, national and international law enforcement agencies.

A captain in the U.S. Air Force, Marquis served as chief of the Air Force Security Police Squadron at the Los Angeles Air Force Base from 1981-83.


Jessie Lee is the Executive Director of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE).  In this role, Lee oversees the day-to-day operations of the National Office and represents the organization at federal, state, local and international meetings.

Under his direction, NOBLE has become a fiscally strong organization, serving as a resource to its members and external agencies on issues including civil rights, non-profit management, fund raising, event management and strategic planning.

Lee is a diversity change agent who works closely with government and law enforcement agencies throughout the country to develop solutions in order to bridge the gap of employment and procurement opportunities for minorities.

Before joining NOBLE, Lee enjoyed a distinguished law enforcement career. Recognized as a mentor to his officers, Lee was known for encouraging his officers to pursue higher education in order to capitalize on promotion opportunities.


Joseph McMillan, NOBLE National President, is the Assistant Inspector General for Investigations for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Office of the Inspector General.

McMillan entered the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations Academy, and was credentialed as a special agent in 1982, serving in that capacity until 1987 when he retired from active duty.  Upon his retirement, he joined the Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS), where he conducted and managed several high profile major white collar fraud, corruption and technology transfer investigations. Follow several DCIS headquarters and field assignments, McMillan selected to assume responsibilities as the Special Agent in Charge, DCIS Mid-Atlantic Field Office. In this capacity, he managed all DCIS investigations conducted in D.C. Virginia, Maryland, Southwest Asia, as well as the European and Middle Eastern theaters.


Sheriff Gabe Morgan is the current President of the Hampton Roads, Virginia chapter of NOBLE. He is presently serving a four-year term as the Sheriff of Newport News.

Morgan served in the U.S. Army for over 21 years, earning a commission through Officer Candidate School. As a commissioned officer, he commanded the Area Confinement Facility at Ft. Knox, Kentucky.  During his career, he served in many theaters including the Middle East, Africa, Bosnia, Croatia, Haiti, Korea and Europe. He culminated his career as the Information Systems Security Officer for the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command at Ft. Monroe, Virginia.