ESPD Welcomes Familiar Faces in New Roles

Jo Robertson and Kristina Baxter celebrated their graduation from the KC Regional Police Academy (submitted photo).

The Excelsior Springs Police Department recently welcomed two new faces to its police force, but they are not unfamiliar to the community or the department. Jo Robertson and Kristina Baxter have embarked on a new journey in their careers a little later than most by becoming police officers, a dream they’ve nurtured while serving in different capacities within the department.

Jo Robertson, previously the long-standing police records clerk, and Kristina Baxter, who served as the city’s animal control officer for 20 years, have shared a path that led them through the rigors of a 7-month police academy to where they are today – sworn officers.

Jo and Kristina have a deep connection to Excelsior Springs and a commitment to serving the community. Kristina, reflecting on her two decades in animal control, mentioned how the experience gave her a unique perspective on law enforcement and community service. The idea of becoming a police officer had always been in the back of her mind, but it was not until recently that this thought turned into a tangible goal.

Jo, on the other hand, had spent years handling police records, a role that, while crucial, kept her away from the frontline of law enforcement. The decision to join the academy came from a desire to be more directly involved in serving and protecting the community. Jo and Kristina were encouraged by Police Chief Gregory Dull and their fellow law enforcement officers, who could see their passion for becoming police officers.

Check out this nice video produced by ESPD to celebrate officers Baxter and Robertson (video courtesy of ESPD created by Kate Webb).

Their journey through the police academy was not without challenges. As Kristina recalls, the physical demands were intense, and the academic requirements were rigorous. However, both women found strength in their friendship and support from their classmates, many of whom were significantly younger. This generational mix, they noted, brought diverse perspectives and added to the richness of their learning experience.

The community of Excelsior Springs has shown immense support for Jo and Kristina. Their unique paths to becoming officers, marked by years of dedication in other roles within the police department, have not only added to their depth of experience but also to their understanding of the community they serve.

As they begin their new roles, Jo and Kristina stand as exemplars of perseverance and commitment to public service. Their story is not just about joining the police force later in life; it’s about following one’s passion regardless of age and previous career paths. It serves as an inspiration to many in Excelsior Springs and beyond, proving that it’s never too late to pursue a dream, especially one that contributes to the greater good of the community.

For Excelsior Springs, the addition of Jo and Kristina to the police force is not just about filling positions; it’s about enriching the force with diverse experiences and perspectives. As they don their uniforms and badges, they carry with them the pride of achieving their dreams and the hopes and expectations of a community they have been a part of for decades. 

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