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Robert Handy Appointed San Bernardino City Chief of Police

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The San Bernardino’s Mayor and Common Council recently appointed Robert Handy as Chief of Police for the City of San Bernardino. Chief Handy comes to San Bernardino from Phoenix, Arizona as a twenty-three year law enforcement veteran with over a decade of police command experience.

Chief Handy began his law enforcement career with the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service. In 1990, he joined the City of Phoenix Police Department, working his way up the ranks to Commander, earning numerous awards for his outstanding performance in the department and community, including twice receiving the Medal of Valor and twice receiving the City of Phoenix Excellence Award. Handy’s distinguished career has included four different commands in the Phoenix Police Department, including the Tactical Bureau, Office of Administration, Training Bureau, and most recently the Maryvale Precinct where he commands 170 officers responsible for policing 110,000 residents.

“I am extremely pleased with the appointment of Rob Handy as our next Chief of Police in San Bernardino,” said Mayor Pat Morris.

“Chief Handy comes to our city as a veteran police commander from the sixth largest city in the United States. His diversity of experience in four different commands gives Chief Handy a wealth of knowledge about how to successfully lead a police department, and his most recent successful command of the Maryvale Precinct in Phoenix, demonstrates he understands how to police and improve public safety in a community with demographics and challenges similar to San Bernardino.”

San Bernardino Council Member Tobin Brinker echoed Mayor Morris’ enthusiasm. “Chief Handy is a proven leader who knows how to listen and understands the value of collaboration between the community and its police officers,” said Brinker. “He is proactive, partnership- driven, and has a consistent track record of success.” The appointment of Handy is the culmination of an extensive recruitment process, which began with thirty-seven candidates from throughout the nation. After initial interviews narrowed the field, two independent panels were assembled to conduct a day-long detailed evaluation of the skill, temperament, experience, performance, and character of the candidates. The first panel consisted of three police chiefs, a school police chief, the city manager, and the president of the San Bernardino Police Officers Association. The second panel consisted of city residents including a professor public administration from Cal State University, San Bernardino, a retired deputy district attorney, a local pastor, a local business CEO, the program director for a local youth nonprofit, and a member of the San Bernardino Board of Police Commissioners.

Both independent panels recommended the Mayor and Common Council consider two final candidates for possible appointment.

After interviews and feedback from the Council during a lengthy closed session meeting, the Mayor and Common Council appointed and confirmed Robert Handy as Chief of Police.

“I look forward to working day-to- day with Chief Handy on continuing San Bernardino’s success in driving down crime and improving public safety,” said City Manager Charles McNeely.

“I believe Chief Handy’s experience will bring our city new opportunities to strengthen our implementation of data-driven community-based policing strategies and build on our reduction of violent crime by 40% over the past six years. He is an outstanding choice.”

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