Succession planning includes new post

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Capt. Kevin Purtymun appointed to new post

By Carol A. Clark

In its effort to create a plan of succession for the ranks of the Los Alamos Police Department, County Administrator Max Baker has appointed Capt. Kevin Purtymun deputy police chief during a special ceremony Sept. 21 at Fuller Lodge.

Baker was among a number of officials, colleagues and family who turned out for the promotion ceremony.

“Kevin Purtymun has served in every rank within the police department and over the past few years has been in charge of very important projects with successful results. He is respected by the members of the department and because of his long service is well known by many community members,” Baker said. “We congratulate him on this promotion and know he will continue to serve the community and the department well.”

Purtymun began at LAPD in 1988 after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from New Mexico State University in Las Cruces.  

“Over the years I have been fortunate to work with many great people from whom I have learned much – whether I reported to them or they reported to me. I am excited about this opportunity and look forward to serving the community and learning another aspect of public service,” Purtymun said. “I’ve been very fortunate in my career here in Los Alamos in having the opportunity to perform a variety of duties including patrol, crime prevention, middle school resource officer, community policing activities and a variety of administrative functions.”

Purtymun’s wife Beverly spoke of the pride that she and the couple’s two children feel about his promotion.

“I’m speaking for Ty, Hannah and myself – We’re all really proud of him. It’s great to see him get the recognition he deserves after all the years that he’s served Los Alamos County,” she said. “Kevin’s pretty low-key and will never speak about himself, but I know that he’s proud of this accomplishment. I believe that he’s always handled himself with professionalism and a lot of humor, both of which have helped him through each day.”

Police Chief Wayne Torpy explained why he advocated the new position.

“This defines a clear number two person in the department and from a leadership perspective Kevin is a longtime member of the police department who’s held a variety of management positions and he also is a longtime member of the community,” Torpy said. “That combination is hard to find and very valuable in terms of mentoring young officers in the department as well as understanding what is important to this community from a law enforcement perspective.”

Purtymun’s duties as deputy chief include remaining the commander of the Operations Division and also assumed responsibility as second in command of the department.

“I am proud of Kevin’s many accomplishments,” Torpy said, adding that he looks forward to working with Purtymun in his new capacity as deputy chief.