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Criminal Justice Update

Leadership changes mark new eras at BCI, OPOTA

The Bureau of Criminal Investigations and the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy, both units of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office, will be under new leadership in 2024.
In December, AG Yost appointed Bruce Pijanowski as BCI superintendent to replace Joe Morbitzer, who retired after five years in the top role.

Pijanowski came aboard at BCI in May 2022 as the assistant superintendent. Before that, he served 34 years with the Delaware Police Department, the last 10 as chief. Along the way, he served as detective, sergeant, detective sergeant, captain and assistant chief.

As of early January, Pijanowski’s successor as assistant superintendent had not been announced.
Pijanowski is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and the Police Executive Leadership College, and has served extensively within the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police.

At OPOTA, Yost appointed Tom Quinlan, former chief of the Columbus Division of Police, as the agency’s executive director, succeeding Dwight Holcomb, who led OPOTA from 2019 until his retirement in November.

Before joining OPOTA as assistant executive director in March 2023, Quinlan spent 36 years in law enforcement, including 33 years with the Columbus police, where he served in every rank.

Quinlan has been involved in law enforcement training throughout his career — with local law enforcement; as an adjunct instructor at OPOTA; and as an OPOTA Basic School commander, overseeing the training and graduation of five classes of recruits.

He serves as chairman of the Attorney General’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on Law Enforcement Training.
Quinlan is a graduate of the FBI’s National Academy and National Executive Institute, and the Major Cities Chiefs Association Police Executive Leadership Institute.

Richard Butsko was hired in December to succeed Quinlan as assistant executive director. A Marine veteran who fought in Desert Storm, Butsko later joined the Grove City Division of Police, where he served for nearly 30 years. He served in every rank and in almost every capacity before being selected chief of police. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy.