Lou Hayes Jr


My name is Lou Hayes, Jr. I grew up a tinkering boy – perpetually building, diagnosing, deconstructing, inventing, and analyzing with my brothers and dad. (Mom and grandma taught me how to cook!)

After Catholic prep school, I attended public university for Mechanical Engineering (and rugby!), but dropped out to follow in Dad's footsteps as a street cop. 


Since 1998, I have been a full-time Police Officer/Detective/Sergeant for a suburban Chicago police department. Some of my assignments include: Patrol, Field Training Officer (FTO), Criminal Investigations, Firearms & Tactics Training Unit, Crisis Intervention Team (CIT), and Tactical (SWAT + medical).

With some SWAT colleagues (and using the theories of deceased Air Force Colonel John Boyd), I developed The Illinois Modela cyclical, non-linear, problem-solving process for police officers. It proved to be a unique endeavor - one that prioritizes life, Constitutional objectives, incident strategy, and tactics in rapidly changing and high-stakes circumstances. Since then, The Illinois Model has expanded greatly to serve as a broad philosophic theory on and pathway to human and organizational adaptability.

As a teen, my first few jobs gave me plenty of grease under my fingernails. My bias towards the technical and industrial gave me a rather mechanical toolbox - both physically and mentally! But my career positions as Detective and educator have drawn me into the realm of emotional intelligence and what industrialized folks might label the "soft" skills of life. 

For a smidgen over two years, I was a team member of The Virtus Group, Inc. - moonlighting with corporate social media efforts, developing and moderating police training courses, presenting at ILEETA conferences, and volunteering at WINx events. 

I currently serve as a Police Sergeant, acting as my department's Training Coordinator and Firearms Range Master. As such, I design, organize, and plan educational and development programs for sworn (armed) and civilian staff members. 



My curiosity and self-study has brought me to learn about generalism, adult learning science, human performance under stress, decision-making, leadership, strategic mindsets, project management, and complex adaptive systems. My relentless asking of challenging questioning that begin with How and Why have earned me the nickname Tactical Philosopher

I am pursuing and open to opportunities to work with a variety of industries and organizations. I speak to large groups...and moderate small intimate workshops. Content extends well beyond policing, into the realms of learning science, education reform, and human problem-solving.  

Follow me on Twitter at @LouHayesJr or connect on LinkedIn

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