VALLEJO, CA – Vallejo City Manager Greg Nyhoff has selected Shawny Williams as the new Chief of Police. Williams, a Deputy Chief for the San Jose Police Department, is expected to begin his new role in November.
Williams was selected following final interviews conducted on September 4 by City Manager Nyhoff. The final appointment is pending the completion of required background checks.
“We recognize that the community has a significant interest in any news related to the appointment of a new Police Chief. It’s important for us to share this news as quickly as possible to fulfill our commitment to transparency in the recruitment and hiring process,” said City Manager Nyhoff. “Deputy Chief Williams is a solid professional with a stellar reputation who received broad accolades from our interview panels. I am excited to have Chief Williams join our community and our leadership team. As ‘Vallejo Unites’ around our youth, our local job producing economic development opportunities, and our Police Department, I believe Chief Williams will be a very positive element in our future success.” Nyhoff went on to express his appreciation and gratitude to the members of the community and outside subject matter experts who participated in the interview panels that provided informed and thoughtful input into this process.
Williams has a proven track record of providing exceptional community service in diverse communities, as a fluent Spanish speaker, seasoned police executive and person of humble beginnings. Williams comes to Vallejo from the City of San Jose, where he has worked for the San Jose Police Department for more than 26 years, moving up through the ranks while gaining broad experience and learning all facets of the operation. Since 2015, Williams has led the San Jose Police Department’s Bureau of Investigations, overseeing approximately 190 personnel with an annual operating budget of approximately $63 million. He has extensive experience in recruiting, hiring practices, training, personnel management, field operations, risk management, criminal investigations, policy development, public safety programs and community engagement. The results of his work enhanced trust and community cooperation with the Department.
“I am humbled and honored by this opportunity to serve as your new Police Chief in Vallejo,” Williams said. “The position of police officer belongs to the people we serve. With that philosophy in mind, I look forward to participating in all aspects of the Vallejo community, building upon the Police Department’s community policing and engagement efforts, and tackling challenges together. We must engage the hearts and minds of all residents, City employees, students, youth and the business leaders.”
Williams has been engaged in community services throughout his career, coaching youth sports, midnight basketball participation and collaborative efforts with faith-based agencies. He holds a Master of Arts degree from Fort Hays State University in Organizational Leadership and Bachelor of Arts degree from Simpson University. He is also a 2012 graduate of the FBI National Academy. Williams also secured his Advanced, Intermediate and Command Officer POST Certifications.
The selection of Williams as the new Police Chief is the result of a robust process that the City conducted in partnership with the recruiting firm Ralph Andersen & Associates. The process included three important community components: 1) A May 23 community meeting that informed a desired candidate profile to provide initial guidance for the recruiter and the position priorities; 2) An online forum to provide input on characteristics desired in the next Police Chief, which was open from June 21 through August 20; and 3) A panel made up of community members, informed by the previous community forums, joined in the panel interview process to evaluate the final five candidates. All three community-focused activities were important components to support the City Council’s priority of improved relationships between the police and community and are part of the larger Vallejo Unites campaign. Williams was selected from a group of 47 total applicants for the Police Chief position. He was the City’s top pick amongst the five applicants who reached the final panel interview stage of the recruitment process.
View the September 4, 2019 ‘City of Vallejo Concludes Panel Interviews for New Police Chief’ press release here.