Mayor-Elect Walsh to Launch National Search for New Police Chief

Walsh to appoint new deputy chiefs and authorize new class of officers

Syracuse, NY (Dec. 27, 2017) – Syracuse Mayor-elect Ben Walsh today announced his administration will undertake a national search to select a new police chief for the city of Syracuse to be in place by the end of 2018. Walsh also announced he will appoint three new deputy chiefs to oversee the Community Policing, Uniform and Investigations Bureaus, and the Mayor-elect committed to bring on a new class of police officers in 2018.

In announcing his plan for leadership of the police department, Walsh said the search process will be open and transparent and that members of the community and law enforcement will be engaged. More information on the search and the community engagement process will be provided in January after the new Mayor’s administration is in place.

Chief Fowler and Deputy Chief Cecile to serve during search process

Syracuse Chief of Police Frank Fowler and First Deputy Chief Joseph Cecile have agreed to remain with the department for one year serving in their current positions until a new chief is sworn in, Walsh said.

“I am grateful to Chief Fowler and First Deputy Chief Cecile for continuing to lead the department, providing continuity and stability during the search. The city has no greater duty than the safety of its residents, and we take that responsibility very seriously,” Walsh said.

“I have also been listening closely to residents and community leaders from across the city, and I have heard their concerns,” Walsh continued. “I am fully confident the department leadership will be responsive to the needs of the community as we complete our search.”

New Deputy Chiefs to oversee Uniform, Investigations and Community Policing Bureaus

After discussions throughout the city, within the department and with the law enforcement community since being elected, Walsh promoted three department veterans to new leadership positions:

Capt. Lynette DelFavero to Deputy Chief, Uniform Bureau

Capt Lynette DelFavero

Capt. DelFavero has been a member of the department for 20 years, currently serving in Human Resources in the Administration Bureau. She began with the department as a police officer assigned to the midnight shift on patrol and has worked in the Uniform Bureau most of her career. Her experience includes leading the Crime Reduction Team, which focuses on curbing street-level crimes, and she also served as the Commanding Officer of First Platoon Patrol and the Southwest District Captain for the past three years. DelFavero earned her Bachelor’s degree from the University at Buffalo and has a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Marist College.


Sgt. Derek McGork to Deputy Chief, Investigation Bureau

Sgt. McGork is an 18-year member of the department. He is currently a supervisor in the Homicide Squad, which was formed in February 2017 after an increase in homicides in 2016. The unit is focused on improving the solve rate of homicides in the city. McGork received his Bachelor’s degree from Le Moyne College and earned a Master’s degree in Criminology, Law and Society from the University of California Irvine.

Capt. Rich Shoff to Deputy Chief, Community Policing

Capt Rich Shoff

Capt. Shoff joined the department in 1988. He has been the Commanding Officer of Community Policing for eight years. Shoff is the recipient of a number of awards from community groups for his work in city neighborhoods, including the Syracuse Nepali Church, the Neighborhood Watch Groups of Syracuse, Transfiguration Church Neighborhood Watch, and the North Side Columbus Day Parade Committee. Before joining the force, Shoff served six years in the United States Navy.

“Capt. DelFavero, Sgt. McGork and Capt. Shoff are well respected both within the department and in the community. We all share a common goal to ensure that every resident of our city experiences a relationship with the police that is based on mutual respect and concern for the safety of all who live here,” said Sharon Owens, who will work with the Police Department in her role as Deputy Mayor. “As law enforcement professionals, the Mayor-elect and I know the new deputy chiefs are sensitive to the unique needs of our neighborhoods and will provide outstanding leadership to their bureaus.”

New class of police recruits in 2018

Fulfilling a promise made to the city during 2017, Walsh said he will authorize a new class of officers to fill 25-30 of the vacancies funded by the Common Council in the current budget.

“Putting more officers on the streets will help better execute a community policing approach in our neighborhoods,” Walsh said. “More officers will strengthen the relationship between the people of our city and police officers, as well as helping to improve response times and reduce the burden of overtime costs on the department.”

In addition to providing stability throughout the transition, Chief Fowler has committed to continuing his efforts to increase diversity in the Syracuse Police Department in an ongoing effort to comply with the 1980 federal consent decree that sets goals for minority representation by rank and recruiting class.