Keller police chief announces retirement
After nearly 25 years in policing, including 18 with the Keller Police Department, Chief Michael Wilson has announced his retirement effective Friday, Nov. 1, 2019.
“It’s been an honor and a privilege to serve the communities of Keller and Westlake for the past 18 years,” Wilson said. “The lessons and experiences I’ve had in my time here have positioned me well to close this chapter of my life and open a new one as I pursue my next professional goal of building a business from the ground up.”
Wilson joined Keller PD in 2001 and rose through the ranks from an officer to a corporal, sergeant and then lieutenant by 2010. His title changed to captain in 2013 when the department’s lieutenants’ classifications were upgraded to reflect their duties, and he was selected as the new chief in 2015 following longtime chief Mark Hafner’s promotion to city manager.
Under his leadership, Keller PD has maintained its reputation as a trailblazer in community policing, from investments in technology and taking data-driven approaches to reducing crime, to advancing the department’s relationships with public and private partners.
His tenure saw the national re-accreditation of the police department at the highest standard awarded both in 2015 and 2018; rollout of the SirenGPS emergency dispatching and mass notification system in 2016; and in 2018, a full department restructure, body cameras, and the first national accreditation awarded to a regional 911 communications center in the state of Texas.
Regional partnerships were renewed with the cities of Westlake, Colleyville and Southlake as well during his tenure, and with the Humane Society of North Texas to continue managing our Regional Animal Adoption Center. He was also integral to the development of Keller ISD’s Law Enforcement and Public Safety track at the Keller Center for Advanced Learning, where he served on the advisory board and as its president as the city laid groundwork for recruiting homegrown police officers and firefighters.
Perhaps most importantly, Keller maintained its ranking as one of the safest communities in Texas and the nation during Wilson’s time as chief, including achieving the city’s best crime stats in more than 25 years in 2016.
“Mike exemplified Keller PD’s traditions of servant leadership, creativity and community engagement,” City Manager Mark Hafner said. “He truly led this department to a new level of excellence.”
Hafner has met with the men and women of Keller PD in recent weeks to discuss what they would like to see in their next leader, and is crafting a plan now for how to handle interim leadership and the upcoming hiring process. Members of the department, Keller residents, the City Council, and representatives from the city’s partner communities will all have a hand in that process, Hafner said.
“I leave the City of Keller with a heavy heart, but I am excited about the opportunity that awaits me,” Wilson said. “We have built an incredible team and I am confident the Keller Police Department will weather this transition well.”