XENIA — Almost 19 years to the day he became Xenia police chief, Donald R. Person will be retiring from that position.
The city announced Wednesday that Person will be stepping down effective June 10. He was sworn in as chief on June 12, 2003.
“I have been privileged to work with excellent officers, dispatchers and staff at the Xenia Police Division who serve with integrity and compassion every day and have always made me proud to be their chief,” Person said in a release. “In my 19 years as police chief, I have been blessed to serve two city managers and many different council members who have supported me and my vision for the Xenia Police Division and who made sure the division received the resources necessary to carry out that vision. Lastly, I and the XPD officers have been blessed to serve in a community which overwhelmingly supports their police officers and shows that support in tangible ways every day.”
Person’s law enforcement career spans six decades.
He began his law enforcement career as a dispatcher in 1976 and later applied to be a police officer. On Sept. 23, 1979, he was sworn in as an officer and during the next 24 years Person rose through the ranks. He became a sergeant in 1987 and lieutenant in 1992. During his tenure as administrative sergeant, Person was tasked with taking the Xenia Police Division through the accreditation process, which the division achieved in 1993. Several years later, as administrative lieutenant, Person oversaw the rewriting of policies and procedures and an on-site visit from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) for the division’s re-accreditation. It was Person’s diligent work on that project that earned him the division’s highest honor in 1998, the Casey Elliott Memorial “City’s Finest Award.”
“It has been my great honor to serve, protect, and support this community for the past 46 years,” Person said.
City Manager Brent Merriman called Person’s contribution to Xenia “immeasurable.”
“His institutional knowledge of Xenia and its operations along with his innovative spirit has helped to continue Xenia Police Division’s tradition of excellence,” Merriman said. “We thank Chief Person for his dedication not only to law enforcement, but to our community as a whole.”
Person will remain with the department through September to serve as a mentor and help the incoming chief transition into that role. According to city officials, the selection process for a new chief is ongoing and an announcement is expected in the coming days.
“It is my fervent hope that the Xenia Police Division continues to bless this community with great service and leadership and that the City of Xenia continues to thrive and grow as a community,” Person said.
Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.