Michael Dirden, Esq.
Michael Dirden joined Hillard Heintze as Senior Subject-Matter Expert following a long and successful career with the Houston Police Department. As the Executive Assistant Chief of Police, Michael provided leadership and oversight for the department’s Investigative, Strategic and Field Operations, including accountability for Patrol Operations, Traffic Enforcement, the Mental Health Division, Apartment Enforcement and Differential Police Response.
Michael worked with the Hillard Heintze Law Enforcement Consulting Practice on collaborative reform, and he was instrumental in review and analysis of police department operations in San Francisco and the Collaborative Reform Initiative for Technical Assistance (CRI-TA) site in Memphis through the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS).
Michael’s body of work in law enforcement highlights an enduring commitment to advancing the profession through community engagement. He has served on numerous national committees focused on use of force, internal affairs and community building with trust. Within the Houston Police Department, Michael developed a strong understanding of the collective bargaining practices used by departments to maximize efficiencies.
Working through the department ranks, he rose from Sergeant, Organizational Development Unit, where he helped review and redesign the department’s core processes and structure, to the role of Assistant Chief of Police, where he was instrumental in providing Professional Standards and Criminal Investigations oversight.
Upon his appointment as Executive Assistant Chief of Police, Michael served as chairman of the following internal review processes or programs: Conducted Energy Device (Taser); Use of Force Committee; Personnel Concerns (Early Warning System); Administrative Disciplinary Committee; Independent Police Oversight Board; Public Safety Advisory Committee; and Uniform and Equipment Standards Committee.
Michael holds a Juris Doctorate from South Texas College of Law (Houston, Texas), a Master of Science from Sam Houston State University (Huntsville, Texas) and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Texas (Austin, Texas).