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Waco: City extends search for new police chief

The City of Waco will take additional time in the search for a new police chief, officials announced Tuesday evening. (File)
The City of Waco will take additional time in the search for a new police chief, officials announced Tuesday evening. (File)(KWTX)
Published: Jun. 30, 2020 at 7:23 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The City of Waco will take additional time in the search for a new police chief, officials announced Tuesday evening.

The city named five finalists for the position a week ago, but the “COVID-19 pandemic coupled with the ongoing dialogue in the country surrounding the role of police has changed the environment for completing a hiring process for chief of police.,” Deputy City Manager Bradley Ford said in a press release Tuesday evening.

“While we are pleased with the finalists who were being considered, we believe more time and consideration is essential to select the person to lead the department,” Ford said.

“We have decided to cancel a virtual town hall with two of the current candidates and extend the search based on the many changes and challenges facing public safety agencies across the country,” he said.

Veteran officer Frank Gentsch, who has been serving as acting chief, will be sworn in as interim chief, succeeding Ryan Holt, who is in the process of moving to city hall to begin a new job as assistant city to oversee the city’s police, fire and animal services departments, the Cameron Park Zoo and the Parks and Recreation Department.

Gentsch also served as interim chief after the retirement of former Chief Brent Stroman.

The previously announced candidates (Source: City of Waco)

Albert (Stan) Standridge has 25 years of experience with the Abilene Police Department and currently serves as Chief. He spent a decade on the SWAT Team, served in Internal Affairs, and he continues to teach on several topics including ethics, leadership, and active shooter. Prior to his law enforcement career, Stan served in the United States Air Force as a Security Specialist, serving two years overseas and two years at Dyess Air Force Base. Stan has been a certified adjunct instructor with Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT), which is the national model used by law enforcement in response to active threats, since 2004. Stan holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Sam Houston State University and a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Art and Science from Midwestern State University.

Jason Lando has 21 years of experience with the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police and is currently serving his sixth year as Commander. He previously worked assignments in patrol, undercover narcotics, SWAT, and as a crisis negotiator. Jason and several colleagues established the Police Bureau’s Procedural Justice Unit. His team designed and implemented training in procedural justice, de-escalation, and implicit bias, and trained 1,000 police officers over three years. The team now offers implicit bias training to community members and local organizations.Jason holds a Master’s degree in Legal Studies from the California University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor’s degree in Emergency Medicine Management from the University of Pittsburgh.

Marcus Dudley has more than 23 years of experience in law enforcement and currently serves as the Internal Affairs Bureau Commander for the City of Aurora, Colorado Police Department. He previously served as the Investigations Bureau Commander. Marcus also served in the United States Army Reserves for eight years and was deployed to the combat zone during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. He was awarded combat patch, the National Defense Service Medal, and the Southwest Asia Service Medal. Marcus holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Economics with a concentration in management and finance from Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas.

Patrick Gallagher has 30 years of experience with the Virginia Beach Police Department, where he serves as Deputy Chief. He began his law enforcement career in 1983 after joining the U.S. Army’s Military Police Corps. His military assignments included the 218th MP Company, Augsburg Germany and the 555th MP Company at Fort Lee, Virginia. Patrick is the co-chair of the Virginia Beach Inclusion and Diversity Council and is a lead instructor for the City’s mandatory Inclusion and Diversity training. Patrick holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration and a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, both from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.

Richard Bash has 31 years of experience with the Columbus Division of Police and currently serves as Deputy Chief. He has served as Deputy Chief of Homeland Security, Patrol, Investigative, and now the Public Accountability subdivision. Before being promoted to his current rank, Richard held assignments as a School Resource Officer, Mounted Officer, Covert and Investigative Officer, and commanded units including the Community Liaison Officers and the Crime Lab. Richard holds a Master’s degree in Management from Mt. Vernon Nazarene University and a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Ohio Dominican University.

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