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‘An honor': Meet LAPD's first female deputy chief, Ruby Flores

As the Los Angeles Police Department celebrates its first female deputy chief, the woman stepping up to the responsibility is taking the historic role seriously in showing young girls and women they can achieve what they set their intentions on.

Ruby Flores, a Mexican American woman raised in East Los Angeles and Norwalk, beamed with pride as she spoke with NBC4 about her new position. While ecstatic she successfully catapulted her career into a major leadership position, she said that the weight of the responsibility associated with this role in both the department and the public isn’t lost on her.

“I want to make sure if I can impact young girls and women in a positive way by being in this leadership position, then I want to do that and will continue to do that,” Flores said.

Appointed to the department in 1994, Flores said she gained interest in joining the force while studying criminal justice at Long Beach State University. A less-than-ideal experience with a different police agency in her personal life further cemented her goal of becoming an officer.

“I was about 21 years old and I was in a car accident by myself and I was ultimately stranded and victimized by a stranger in an attempted assault,” Flores shared. “Ultimately, they found the suspect and I went to court. The suspect was arrested but the process is what was eye-opening to me because as a woman, I felt that I was not treated appropriately.”

According to Flores, the process made her feel like she was a suspect although she was the one who was targeted. That made her want to make a difference.

“I wanted to come and be part of the change instead of contributing to that negative dialogue,” Flores said.

She shared that her journey with the LAPD was met with some confusion by people who questioned why she wanted to become an officer. She said she knew entering a male-dominated workforce would come with some challenges but proved herself to be exceptional and was quickly accepted by her peers.

“It’s been an honor,” Flores said. “It’s been a long, uphill battle in some regards because it’s not easy to rise up these ranks and not everyone’s entitled to this rank, which is why I believe it to be an even greater honor.”

Now that she’s been appointed as a deputy chief, her goal is to continue improving diversity and inclusion in the force as well as inspire girls and women to follow their ambitions, no matter who tries to dissuade them.

“Young girls can do anything they want,” Flores said. “They just have to be open to it, be confident and work hard, and they will realize that they’re capable of so much more than they thought they were.”


Source: NBC Los Angeles

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