Support Our 'Goals Not Guns' Campaign!

Our Neighborhood Safety Community Council (NSCC) recently launched the “Goals Not Guns” campaign alongside Elpis Enterprises, a local nonprofit serving Saint Paul youth. Together, we’re involving young people in healthy conversations about gun violence prevention and mental health.

As part of “Goals Not Guns,” local students designed shirts with a violence prevention message. Designs from students at Face to Face Academy and Humboldt High School are now available for purchase. All proceeds go to support the individual schools and their students. 

Buy a Shirt to Support Local Students

About the Office of Neighborhood Safety (ONS)

The Office of Neighborhood Safety leads the  advancement of the Community-First Public Safety framework through the coordination of Community-First investments, including violence prevention strategies and alternative response, in close collaboration with our Department of Safety and Inspections, Saint Paul Police Department, Saint Paul Fire Department, and other Community-First Public Safety partners.  

The Office established a permanent Neighborhood Safety Community Council which will engage community residents, local stakeholders, and public safety representatives to inform strategy development, as well as directing resources to impacted communities.  

The Office of Neighborhood Safety also engages in research, data collection, and analysis through participatory methods that engage residents and system stakeholders in the co-development of neighborhood assessments, alongside interventions that are responsive to the needs of our neighbors. 

Brooke Blakey was appointed as the first-ever Director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety in February 2022.  

Community-First Public Safety Framework Infographic

Community First Public Safety (CFPS) Framework

The Office of Neighborhood Safety advances the Community First Public Safety (CFPS) framework that seeks to transcend crime response to build a compelling violence reduction strategy for Saint Paul which is informed by deep public engagement, research, tracking and analysis of real time data, and cross-sector collaboration of stakeholders. These are the principles that guide this work: 

  • Enhancing The Capacity of Our Public Safety Systems: People who trust that law enforcement systems and personnel will treat them fairly are more likely to follow the law, assist investigations, and call 911 in an emergency. 

  • Improving Community Connectivity and Supports: Residents who are financially stable and connected to community are less likely to commit a crime or be victimized by criminal activity. 

  • Leveraging Research and Localized Data to Inform Policy and Strategies: CFPS partners share respective data, dashboards, metrics, grids, logic models, and report outs to analyze and inform collaborative work. 

  • Collaborating To Create Shared Expectations, Process & Outcomes: CFPS partners build trust and cohesion to ensure support and leverage of respective projects/initiatives for the greatest collective impact on violence reduction. 

  • Designing Public Spaces for Safety: The quality of our built environment strongly influences the outcomes and behaviors that occur within. Public spaces that are well designed, well-maintained, and well-lit proactively improve quality of life, and limit opportunity for undesirable activities.

View the Community First Public Safety Dashboard

Project PEACE Organization Model - Visual

Project PEACE

Prevention/Intervention, Environmental Design, Accountability/Outreach,Community Action, and Enforcement

Led by ONS, Project PEACE is a methodical, individualized gun violence intervention that connects gun violence involved individuals with evidence-based community led programming, and wraparound supports. The approach facilitates direct, sustained and persistent engagement with a small number of group-involved individuals through a partnership of community leaders, optimal response teams, social service providers, employers, and law enforcement standing and acting together. It was designed after months of community input and stakeholder meetings intended to reflect the needs of our residents. 

The launch of Project PEACE comes amid the City of Saint Paul’s ongoing engagement in the Biden Administration’s White House CVI Collaborative, which involves 15 jurisdictions across the country working to leverage American Rescue Plan funds to scale and strengthen evidence-based community violence interventions (CVI) to reduce gun violence. Project PEACE will support President Biden’s comprehensive strategy to prevent and respond to gun crime.   

Read Mayor Carter’s announcement of Project PEACE.

Download the Project PEACE organizational model infographic or review the information below.

Office of Neighborhood Safety Leadership

Brooke Blakey, Director

Brooke Blakey Headshot Photo

Brooke Blakey, director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety, joined the City of Saint Paul from Metro Transit, where she has served as Chief of Staff to Metro Transit Chief of Police. In this role, she oversaw operations, investigations, administration and community outreach and engagement, along with ushering forward the development of the Metro Transit Police Department’s Homeless Action Team (HAT).  

Prior to joining Metro Transit, she served in the Ramsey County Public Defender's Office and the Minnesota State Fair Police Department, holding an array of positions, including the department’s Public Information Officer.  

Blakey has an undergraduate degree in child psychology and criminology from the University of Minnesota, a post bachelor's degree in forensic psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and a Master of Science in forensic science with an emphasis on criminal investigation from National University.  

She is also a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command #484 and has earned advanced certifications from the FBI’s Law Enforcement Executive Development Association (FBI-LEEDA), and Minnesota’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (MN BCA). 

Rachel Holzemer, Deputy Director

Headshot of deputy director Rachel Holzemer smiling in front of a grassy lawn and trees.

Rachel Holzemer, deputy director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety, started working at the City of Saint Paul in 2019 as an innovation consultant in the Mayor’s Office. In this role, she served the City enterprise to develop new programs, facilitate strategic planning, and lead innovation and continuous improvement projects. She has led citywide efforts including the Returning Home Saint Paul pilot program, the Saint Paul Bridge Fund during the pandemic, co-led the Community First Public Safety workgroup, and supported the implementation of the Office of Neighborhood Safety.  

Prior to joining the City of Saint Paul, Holzemer worked at Hennepin County serving in management, supervisory, and frontline roles in the Center of Innovation and Excellence and Human Services. She brings with her a diverse experience and understanding of community-centered, collaborative facilitation methods and working in complex systems. Holzemer continues to use her expertise to push the boundaries of government systems to meet the needs of residents and believes that by centering and collaborating with residents, we can solve our community’s greatest challenges together.

Holzemer is a proud alumnus of the University of Minnesota where she earned a Bachelor of Arts. She went on to earn a Master of Arts in Leadership and Management at Concordia University.  

Lynnaia Jacobsen, Neighborhood Safety Community Council Manager

Lynnaia Jacobsen

Lynnaia Jacobsen is a native of Saint Paul, Minnesota where she grew up in the Frogtown-Midway neighborhood and is alumni of Saint Paul Central High School. Jacobsen comes to us with an extensive background in public safety administration serving as a 911 Emergency Dispatcher for both Washington and Dakota Counties, Chief’s Executive Assistant with Metro Transit Police Department, and Executive Aide to the Commissioner with Department of Public Safety. In her positions she participated in strategic planning, organizational structure, learning policy and inclusiveness, community conversations and engagement.

During her full-time employment Jacobsen served the Union Gospel Mission Board of Directors where she assisted as the keeper of board minutes. Here she learned extensively about Board operations, nonprofits; strengthening her knowledge in budget/funding, philanthropy, the unsheltered epidemic and what it means to be a humanitarian.

Today, Jacobsen is a Metro State graduate with BS degree that focuses on ethics and equal opportunity in politics and criminal justice. Her passion remains in public safety as she continues to pursue opportunities that will allow her to assist in creating healthy and safe spaces. This includes enforcing ethics within communities, our State Government and Law Enforcement, influencing their practices, policies and personnel orders. She aspires to make sure community are not just people we serve, but they are part of our governmental structure serving as actual participants and awarded equal opportunities in the positions they hold.

Faith Lofton, Program Manager

Faith Lofton Headshot Photo

Faith Lofton is a Saint Paul, Minnesota native, born and raised in the historic Rondo Neighborhood. Lofton is a proud Alumni of Saint Paul Central High School, Saint Paul College and attended Metropolitan State University. She is passionate about community and the impact we all can have, which has led her to the current position with the City of Saint Paul.

Lofton has been in the field of community service, holding various leadership roles since 2009. Prior to joining us, she served as Program Director and Interim CEO at Ujamaa Place. In addition to directing and coordinating daily operations to increase efficiency, Lofton also coordinated all culturally specific programs with the goal of closing the gap of social welfare for formally incarcerated African American males in MN. Lofton was a key contributor in launching the Returning Home Saint Paul (RHSP) pilot program in collaboration with the City of Saint Paul. 

The first 10 years of her career were spent serving the community through People Incorporated Mental Health Services. During her tenure, Lofton provided leadership and supervision to clients and staff in the delivery of mental health services in the Homeless Services and Customized Living divisions. Lofton continues to use her expertise to help build and expand programs to promote equity and better serve the community.

Neighborhood Safety Community Council (NSCC)

Community members are invited to apply to join the Office of Neighborhood Safety Community Council (NSCC). As detailed in the city’s administrative code, this 15-member group will work with the Director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety to develop an annual strategic plan that identifies, recommends and prioritizes public safety initiatives, establishes areas of focus, and monitors justice and violence prevention metrics and indicators. This work will also include reviewing and reporting on the effectiveness of activities and initiatives undertaken by the Office of Neighborhood Safety.  

The NSCC will also make recommendations for grant-making activities related to enhancing neighborhood safety, including reviewing and evaluating funding proposals. The announcement of $4 million for grants reflects the resources the NSCC will work with the Office of Neighborhood Safety to allocate in support of neighborhood safety efforts across Saint Paul.

Apply for the Neighborhood Safety Community Council

The NSCC will meet at least four times per year, with additional meetings taking place as often as necessary. The council also may establish areas of focus and create a task force to support each area of focus. Task force members can include a combination of NSCC members as well as other community members who are not current appointees and will be selected by the continuing members. Members of the NSCC as well as members of task forces will receive a stipend of $50.00 per meeting.

Apply Now

Neighborhood Safety Community Council Documents

Find the latest NSCC meetings, agendas, and minutes.

Neighborhood Safety News

New public safety measures from youth-focused research

4/24/2024 Office of Neighborhood Safety

The City of Saint Paul partnered with the Harvard Kennedy School and World Youth Connect to create new indicators of public safety based on youth behavior.

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Mayor Carter Announces New Efforts to Support Safer Outcomes in Neighborhoods Across Saint Paul

7/15/2022 Mayor's Office

Array of New Efforts Include the Launch of Project PEACE by the Office of Neighborhood Safety, and new Community-First Public Safety Investments Supported by City of Saint Paul American Rescue Plan Funds

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Mayor Carter Appoints Brooke Blakey As Director of New Saint Paul Office of Neighborhood Safety

2/14/2022 Mayor's Office

Brooke Blakey to Lead New Office Focused on Advancing Saint Paul’s Community-First Public Safety Framework

Read More

Last Edited: April 5, 2024