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Shaun Ferguson, left, at City Hall where Mayor LaToya Cantrell, right, introduced him as the new New Orleans superintendent of police on Monday, January 14, 2019.

We congratulate Shaun Ferguson on his new appointment as superintendent of the New Orleans Police Department.

Ferguson, named to his new post Monday by New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, seems poised to start his new job Friday with a lot of good will. A veteran of the department who’s overseen its education and training division, the 46-year-old officer has drawn positive reviews from those he’s worked with over the years. He once commanded officers in Cantrell’s district when she was a city councilwoman.

Ferguson might have even more public support if his appointment had come from a thorough and transparent search process. Cantrell, who had touted the virtues of such a search process when she was a mayoral candidate, instead tapped Ferguson for the job just days after outgoing superintendent Michael Harrison announced he was taking the police chief’s job in Baltimore.

Ferguson could end up being a good police chief, and of course, we hope he succeeds. Leading a big-city police department is a tough job, and his performance will help shape the regional business climate beyond New Orleans. The city’s public safety is a concern not only for New Orleans residents, but the many visitors who see it as a tourism destination.

Under Harrison, the number of homicides in the city declined, and we hope for more progress on Ferguson’s watch. No police chief can prevent or fight crime alone, though. It’s a community effort, which is why the work Ferguson begins on Friday must also be our own.