Falls Church City Manager Wyatt Shields announced today that Major Mary Gavin will be promoted to Chief of Police effective Nov. 12 when Harry Reitze retires after 37 years with the Department. Gavin has served as the City’s Deputy Chief of Police since December 2007.
“Mary has earned the trust and respect of the members of the Department and the community,” said Shields. “She lives and breathes the highest standards of law enforcement and is the ideal person to lead our Police Department forward.”
“It has been a privilege to serve as Deputy Chief for five years under the guidance of Colonel Harry W. Reitze,” said Gavin. “I look forward to continuing the strong traditions and culture of the Department and working with The Little City’s community as the Chief of Police.”
As the City’s Deputy Chief, Gavin oversaw the Operations Division, Internal Affairs, and supervised the Commander of Services. She served with the Arlington County Police Department for 21 years in several leadership roles, including Vice Narcotics Commander, Operations District Commander for the Rosslyn-Ballston Corridor, Lieutenant of the Criminal Investigations Auto Squad, and School Resources Supervisor. She also created Arlington’s first Youth Police Academy along with many other initiatives to foster strong ties between public safety personnel and the community.
Gavin played an active role in Arlington’s 9/11 response, including establishing staffing command for police operations, coordinating initial response from nearby county agencies, and managing the prolonged mutual aid requests for 28 agencies throughout the Washington, DC Metro region.
Gavin’s professional memberships include the City of Falls Church Alliance for Youth, Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police, International Association of Chiefs of Police, Association of National Ethic Trainers, and Police Executive Leadership Alumni Association.
Gavin’s extensive education and training includes a bachelor’s degree in Law Enforcement from Eastern Kentucky University, Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Academy (63rd Session), Police Executive Leadership Seminar (PELS, 1999), FBI National Academy (Session 222), and the International Association of Chief of Police’s Leadership Institute on Violence Against Women.