Two candidates seeking to become Thomson’s next police chief will be interviewed by the city council today (Thursday).
City Administrator John C. Waller said a new chief will be selected Friday. The city contracted with the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police for help in the search for a new chief, who will follow Chief Anson Evans and Interim Chief E.J. Bess.
According to Waller, there were 14 applications for the job. Of those, seven were asked to attend testing by the association. Four accepted the invitation to be tested and evaluated. From those, the top three candidates, based on scoring from tests and interviews, advanced. Those three were interviewed by Waller and the city’s human resources director.
Now, Lt. Courtney S. Gale and Sgt. William Johnson are the two finalists set to interview with the mayor and council.
“These are two high quality law enforcement professionals with impressive credentials,” Waller said.
Lt. Gale earned a bachelors degree in animal science with a minor in criminal justice from the University of Georgia. She also completed her Master of Public Administration at UGA. She has worked for the University of Georgia Police Department since December 2017. Prior to that, she served with the Athens-Clarke County Police Department from 1998 to 2017.
On Gale’s resume, her professional objective states “I am a fervent advocate for equality while practicing 21st Century Policing and procedural justice. My goal is to apply my leadership, integrity, and passion for our community, our agency, and my team to build trust with a sustainable model of healthy living and work practices. I believe we are guardians of the most precious characteristics of the United States - civil liberties for all. I am goal and mission oriented conditioned to complete assigned tasks to the best of my ability.”
She is also the founder and executive director of the Georgia Association of Women in Public Safety. Her resume also states she has approximately 3,000 hours of professional continued education units in law enforcement topics.
Sgt. Johnson earned a bachelors of science degree in homeland security from Herzing University. He has served with the Sandy Springs Police Department since May 2013. Previously he served from January 2011 to May 2013 with the United States Secret Service as a uniformed officer. He has also worked with the Suwanee Police Department, DeKalb County Police Department, and the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office. He began his law enforcement career as a deputy sheriff jailer in Gwinnett County in September 2007.
On Johnson’s resume, his profile and objective states “Motivated law enforcement professional that works diligently to provide safety and security to the community and leads other law enforcement professionals with over 14 years of progressive experience. Recognized for superior communication, issue resolution, investigative services, and team work skills to support the mission and objectives of the department or agency. A work history that includes successful cross-functional experience in multiple different law enforcement capacities in municipal police departments and federal agencies. Acknowledged as a leader amongst peers with a desire to grow and develop talent, utilizing on the job training and formal instruction.”
His application package also included several letters commending his actions in different law enforcement situations.