Always expect the unexpected!

Stand With Honor

Dean Ackermann
Chief of Police, Glen Rock (NJ) Police Department

Growing up, there was seldom a time where I considered doing anything other than being a police officer. While in high school, I became a Junior Police Reserve in Park Ridge, New Jersey; this was very similar to what would later be referred to as being a law enforcement explorer. As I entered college, I stayed with the department as a Reserve Officer where my interest in law enforcement grew.

In 1983, after initially joining the former Conrail Police Department and attending basic training at the Bergen County Police Academy, I was offered the opportunity to transfer to the newly formed NJ Transit Police Department. The NJ Transit Police Department is a general-powers police agency with state-wide jurisdiction with the primary focus on policing the state’s commuter transit system. While I would only serve with this agency for 3 years, the memories and experiences have carried me through my career and made me a better officer. Thirty plus years later I am still in touch with many of the officers I served with. We worked in some of the worst areas and under less than ideal conditions. In the end, we were better cops for it.

Glen Rock (NJ) Police Department

In 1986, I joined the Glen Rock Police Department in the northern part of the state, just outside of New York City. During the next three decades, my career was evenly split working as a Patrol Officer, a Detective and then as a Patrol Tour Commander, with may varied assignments along the way.

I have met many good people along the way and even managed to help a few. I have worked with some of the best and mourn the passing of those who did not make it. Forever in my thoughts are Police Officer Danny Smith–Essex County Police Department–End of Watch: Monday September 17, 1984; and, Police Officer Mary Ann Collura–Fair Lawn Police Department–End of Watch Thursday April 17, 2003.

My career experiences always taught me to expect the unexpected. As my wife and I prepared to ring in the New Year for 2016, it was to be my last as an active member of service. However, sudden and unexpected changes in my department brought me to another path and retirement was going to be put on hold.

On September 1, 2016, I entered the final and most challenging stage of my career by taking command of the Glen Rock Police Department, an agency comprised of 23 sworn officers and a support staff of 3 civilians. Through preserving those foundational practices which have established the GRPD as an agency with vast community support and embracing improvement and innovation I look forward to making the GRPD the best version of itself. To leave the place better than you found it is the true challenge for any leader.

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