MARION — Marion police Lt. Chad Nott has been chosen as interim police chief to take over after Chief Joseph McHale leaves June 3.
“Chad will be the first of two interim chiefs,” said McHale, who has resigned to take a consultant’s job in Florida.
Nott’s term as interim chief is limited to 90 days, McHale said. If a new chief has not been hired by Sept. 1, Lt. Scott Elam will take over as interim chief.
Both officers have been with the Marion Police Department for more than 20 years, McHale said, and both were integral in developing the department’s first five-year strategic plan.
Nott started with the department in 1996 as a patrol officer. Over the years, he has been a detective, a patrol sergeant, investigative sergeant and, most recently, patrol lieutenant.
“He knows every inch of this department,” McHale said. “He has a really good knowledge of the inner workings of this department, and he knows this community and is rooted in this community.”
Nott graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in criminology and joined the Marion Police Department age 26.
“I’m excited,” Nott said. “I’m excited, and I am humbled. This is the only law enforcement agency I have ever been a part of.
“This is a great department and a great community, and we have made a lot of progress over the years, and we will continue that forward progress.”
McHale tendered his resignation less than a year after rolling out the department’s first five-year strategic plan, which included adding 10 sworn officers and 12 civilian employees over the next five years, upgrading technology, restructuring the department, reorganizing staff and better prioritizing service calls and officer response.
With Nott taking the helm, the department will continue to move forward with that plan, McHale said.
“That’s the magic here is that I didn’t create that five-year plan by myself,” McHale said. “Chad and Scott, along with people from all across the organization, were involved in developing that plan. ... And now, the people that built the plan are still in place even though I’m leaving.”
Nott said he comes into the position with every intention of carrying the five-year plan forward, but he also is bringing some ideas to the table.
“We need to develop personnel,” he said. “We’ve got to recruit more regionally — get out there to the college fairs and other places so we can show people what we’re all about and get them interested in what we do here.”
Elam, the department’s investigative lieutenant, also has been with the department since 1996. He served as interim chief for 90 days during the search that led to the hiring of McHale in December 2016.
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