Lacey PD finds next chief in Santa Mon­ica

The News Tribune - - Local - BY ROLF BOONE [email protected]­olympian.com

Ken Semko, the for­mer in­terim chief of the Santa Mon­ica Po­lice Depart­ment in Cal­i­for­nia, has ac­cepted the city of Lacey’s of­fer to be its next po­lice chief.

He re­places Dusty Pier­point, who spent his en­tire law en­force­ment ca­reer with the city.

Semko is still sub­ject to some fi­nal pre-em­ploy­ment steps, such as a back­ground check, but he is ex­pected to start Feb. 11. He will earn an an­nual salary of $158,054, ac­cord­ing to City Man­ager Scott Spence.

Semko comes to Lacey with 27 years of ex­pe­ri­ence with the Santa Mon­ica Po­lice Depart­ment, ac­cord­ing to a news re­lease. He started in 1991 as an of­fi­cer and rose through the ranks, even­tu­ally serv­ing as in­terim po­lice chief. Semko earned his un­der­grad­u­ate de­gree in so­ci­ol­ogy and a master’s de­gree in or­ga­ni­za­tional lead­er­ship.

“I have a high de­gree of con­fi­dence that he will serve the city well,”

Spence told The Olympian Wed­nes­day.

Semko also won praise from an im­por­tant con­stituent: the Lacey po­lice of­fi­cers guild. The guild has re­cently raised con­cerns about the in­ter­nal op­er­a­tions of the depart­ment and pressed for an out­side hire.

“I was very im­pressed with Semko’s ex­pe­ri­ence and he met (and ex­ceed- ed) ev­ery­thing the guild had asked for in a chief can­di­date,” guild pres­i­dent Ken Koll­mann said Wed­nes­day in an email to The Olympian.

“The city man­ager did an ex­cel­lent job in in­clud­ing the guild in the se­lec­tion process and has lis­tened to the guild’s con­cerns. I ap­pre­ci­ate his ef­forts in this process, and I am very op­ti­mistic for the fu­ture of our depart­ment. I look for­ward to work­ing with our new chief so that to­gether we can move for­ward and con­tinue our ex­cel­lent ser­vice for the ci­ti­zens of Lacey,” Koll­man wrote.

Semko was among six fi­nal­ists who re­cently toured the city and the po­lice depart­ment and in­tro­duced them­selves to the com­mu­nity. Spence said he re­ceived a lot of pos­i­tive feed­back about Semko after that meet­ing.

CITY OF LACEY Cour­tesy

Ken Semko has been hired as po­lice chief in Lacey.

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