Newly Appointed Police Chief Ryan Sullivan Takes Helm in Orinda

(Sally Hogarty, PHotographer)
Police Chief Ryan Sullivan settles into his new role as Orinda’s top cop.

    Ryan Sullivan was selected by City Manager David Biggs as Orinda’s Chief of Police, effective Sept. 20. Chosen from a slate of “qualified candidates” from the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office, Sullivan “is a great fit for Orinda,” according to Biggs.
    Sullivan joined the Sheriff’s office in 2005 and served as a sergeant in Internal Affairs and then as the lieutenant responsible for Internal Affairs. He was the Academy Coordinator, a patrol supervisor and had many diverse specialty assignments.
    With just two weeks on the job, Sullivan said it is challenging trying to find things and knowing which meetings to attend, but countered with, “It’s an exciting adventure.”
    Sullivan feels his previous experiences bring a different perspective to policing the community.
    “I see the Orinda Police Department as part of the city, with a customer service approach to community policing,” he said. “I want us to be highly visible and accessible to our citizens.”
    Sullivan said keeping an open line of communication is key to enhancing emergency preparedness and is impressed with the established, “tremendous cooperating relationships Orinda has with Lafayette and Moraga.”
    He plans to “start doing things which are known to work” for community safety. Praising practices such as Neighborhood Watch programs and National Night Out, he also said he will work to become more visible on social media outlets, especially when there’s a need to be timely to disseminate information to the public.
    Spending the first 12 years of his life in Lafayette, Sullivan said his great-great-great grandfather was the first Irish immigrant to settle there in 1847. Other family members traveled by wagon train from Missouri to join him, and Sullivan still has relatives living there.
    Now living in Benicia, Sullivan enjoys dirt biking with his sons Liam and Sean, but he leaves motocross and BMX riding to them. “I know how that story would end,” he said.

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