Police chief search in progress

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County > Forty candidates applied for the opening

By The Staff

Police Chief Wayne Torpy will officially retire Friday, and the search for a new chief is in progress. The position posting closed July 26.

The county received 40 applications for the position, of which 26 applicants met the minimum qualifications.

County administrator Harry Burgess will select up to five finalists. The top candidates will travel to Los Alamos for in-person interviews and a special “meet the finalists” reception with the public at the council chambers at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12.

The county will have three different panels – one senior management, one LAPD and one community panel – who will conduct all day interviews with the finalists on Sept. 13.

It’s expected that Burgess will extend an offer to the successful candidate before the end of September.

Officials declined to reveal specific questions; but they did agree to talk generally about the process.

“We will be looking for management philosophy, community interaction and to be honest with you I don’t really even want to say anything more about that even,” Burgess said last week.

All acting chief Phil Taylor would say is that one of the things he’ll be looking at is their experience and how they used it in their careers.

County Council Chair Geoff Rodgers, through an emailed statement, clarified the council’s role in the process.

“By County Charter, the hiring of the police chief, like other department heads, is within the scope of the county administrator’s job,” Rodgers said.