Grand Rapids City Manager Appoints New Grand Rapids Police Chief

Posted at 4:13 PM, Jun 27, 2014
and last updated 2014-06-27 16:13:33-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich (June 27, 2014) – The Grand Rapids City Manager announced the new city police chief Friday.

Here is the release from Gregory A. Sundstrom:

“The process designed for the selection of our next Police Chief and shared with the community earlier this year was a success,” stated City Manager Greg Sundstrom. After nearly 30 meetings with citizens, community leaders and local law enforcement professionals, three interview sessions, and well-attended community forums where Grand Rapids citizens turned out to meet and provide feedback on the finalists, City Manager Sundstrom has named David M. Rahinsky, Chief of Police, in Franklin, Tennessee as the City of Grand Rapids’ next Chief of Police. “I am pleased that he has accepted this important position with our great city,” said Sundstrom.
“I am grateful to this community for attending the neighborhood meetings and providing the survey responses sharing citizens’ desires for what they wanted in our next Police Chief. This input produced the Police Chief Community Profile. This profile, as well as interviews and public feedback, was what I considered in selecting our next Police Chief,” said Sundstrom.
“Although this was a difficult decision–as we had four very strong candidates to consider–feedback from hundreds of citizens made this choice easier. I believe Chief Rahinsky best matches the Community Profile. His experience and resume are very deep and he has received wide support from the community. Chief Rahinsky was unanimously selected by my Police Chief Advisory Team as the best fit for Grand Rapids,” said Sundstrom.
“I am eager to begin working with the men and women of the Grand Rapids Police Department. The community engagement process provided me with a flavor of what Grand Rapids residents are most interested in, and I intend to build community relationships with that as my starting point,” stated Rahinsky.
Rahinsky began his law enforcement career in 1989 in Fort Lauderdale as a Patrol Officer with the Broward County Sheriff’s Department. Within ten years he was promoted to the position of Lieutenant Commander. While with the Sheriff’s Department, he served as Executive Officer for the City of Dania Beach, Chief of Pembroke Park, and Chief of Oakland Park. In 2006, Rahinsky was hired by the City of Franklin, Tennessee as Deputy Chief, promoted to Assistant Chief, and then in 2011, he was promoted to Police Chief. His notable achievements include a focus on increased accountability, professionalism, and responsiveness to improve productivity, crime prevention, and community relations. To improve transparency, he established a Public Affairs office and initiated a crime mapping program for the community
Sundstrom expressed his thanks to the finalists who spent time in Grand Rapids meeting the community: Ernest N. Finley Jr., Deputy Chief of Police in Atlanta, Georgia; Mark A. Herald, Director of Public Safety, in East Grand Rapids, Michigan; and Michael W. Reaves, Director of Public Safety, Port Huron, Michigan. “These leaders are highly regarded in their communities, and we were honored to have them consider Grand Rapids for their next career move, as well as their new home.”
He also thanked his Advisory Team, comprised of Tom Almonte, Assistant to the City Manager; Christine Arnold, Director of the Woodrick Diversity Learning Center at Grand Rapids Community College; Johnny Brann, Jr., local restaurant owner; Mari Beth Jelks, Managing Director of Administrative Services at the City of Grand Rapids; Joe Jones, Grand Rapids Urban League President; Ralph Mason, retired Grand Rapids Police Lieutenant; and Catherine Mish, City Attorney.
Sundstrom also acknowledged the contributions of Interim Police Chief Daniel Savage. “I would like to commend Interim Chief Savage for stepping up to lead the Police Department until the new Chief takes the helm. Dan is a dedicated law enforcement professional, and Grand Rapids is fortunate to have had such a talented leader in the Grand Rapids Police Department serve as Police Chief in the interim.”