Village Manager David Fieldman announced today that Police Chief Robert Porter will retire after 28 years of service. His last day with Downers Grove will be October 9, 2015.
"Bob's professional, straightforward approach to the daily challenges of law enforcement will be greatly missed. His selfless, outstanding performance elevates others," Manager Fieldman said.
Porter has accepted a position as Chief of Police for Huntley, Illinois, effective October 12, 2015. The challenge of working in a new environment is one that he finds appealing, albeit bittersweet.
"Even though I am saddened to be leaving so many good friends here, I am excited about the challenge and opportunity to lead a young, growing department into the future," Chief Porter said.
Porter began his law enforcement career in Downers Grove on January 5, 1987, at the age of 22. He rose through the ranks and was appointed Downers Grove's Police Chief in August 2001. Porter's well-deserved reputation as a no-nonsense law enforcement professional mirrors the accolades for operational excellence the department has received under his watch.
"The recognized excellence exhibited day-in and day-out by the exceptional men and women of the Downers Grove Police Department is no accident. It is the direct and hard-earned result of the consistently high-quality leadership provided by Chief Porter and his command staff. Although his "can-do," inspirational professionalism surely will be missed, it is not at all surprising that someone with his extraordinary energy, experience and talents would want to continue sharing his expertise," stated Mayor Martin Tully.
In March 2015, the Downers Grove Police Department received Accreditation with Excellence from The Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). Only about 4% of CALEA accredited agencies meet the criteria for the Excellence award, which is about .25% of all police agencies in the nation. The professionalism of department personnel and the high quality of service provided to the community resulted in a very successful accreditation outcome.
During his 15 years as Chief, the department received other prestigious awards including the Department of Defense Pro Patria Award for Employer Support for the Guard and Reserve. The department was also recognized with the 2014 Illinois Traffic Safety Challenge as the top agency in the state for municipal agencies with 66 to 100 sworn officers for their overall approach to traffic safety.
"It has always been important to me as Chief to leave the department in a positive way. Having served as Chief for 15 years, I am fortunate to leave the department in good hands and well positioned to move forward. We have incredibly gifted people in this organization and I look forward to seeing the department continue to do good things for the community," Porter said.
The Village extends best wishes to Chief Porter and his family as they embark on their new journey. Deputy Chief Bill Budds will serve as Acting Chief of Police effective, October 9, 2015.