Wednesday, April 24, 2024


Westport’s Police Chief Announces His Retirement

Westport’s Police Chief Announces His Retirement
William J. Chiarenzelli, Westports highly respected police chief for the past 13 years, announced his retirement today effective Jan. 1 after 38 years of service to the town.
“I think 38 years is enough,” Chiarenzelli told WestportNow. “But there’s still plenty to do and there are good people here who can do it.”
No immediate successor to the 59-year-old Chiarenzelli was named, although First Selectwoman Diane Goss Farrell is expected to choose a new chief from among department ranks, according to a Town Hall source.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to have worked with Bill in his capacity as Westport chief of police,” Farrell said in a statement.
“His dedication to the protection of Westport’s citizens has resulted in nearly 38 years of superior and highly professional service.
“He holds the respect of his peers as one of Connecticut’s pre-eminent chiefs of police.  Westport will miss Bill’s caring compassionate leadership.  We wish him well in what we expect will be a very active retirement.”
Earlier this year, Farrell promoted three veteran officers to Deputy Chief Җ Don Brown, Al Fiore, and David Heinmiller when Chiarenzelli was temporarily sidelined for health reasons.

Police Chief William J. Chiarenzelli poses with First Selectwoman Diane Goss Farrell Nov. 20 during a group picture for graduates of the Citizens Police Academy. photo

All are highly regarded in the police community and are the leading candidates to succeed to the top post, the source said.
Chiarenzelli, who joined the force in 1966, was said by friends to be hoping for a low-key retirement ֖ thus the announcement on the day before Thanksgiving.
When the time comes, I just prefer to go out quietly,Ӕ he told a reporter recently when asked about a career-reviewing interview.
Following his retirement, Chiarenzelli is expected to continue his long association with state and county police organizations as well as the Westport Police Athletic League (PAL).
After a period of rest—some of it spent gardening at his Easton home—he will consult in the private sector on matters of corporate security and crisis management.
Chiarenzellis tenure as WestportҒs top cop coincided with a tumultuous time in the towns history as it moved from the 90s into the 21st century and the age of heightened security concerns.
His list of accomplishments ranged from creating the ғAre U Okay program for senior adults to initiating WestportԒs weapons of mass destruction protective equipment program.
Chiarenzelli was sworn in as police chief in July 1990, succeeding Ron Malone, now a member of the Representative Town Meeting (RTM). He was appointed by former First Selectman Douglas Wood.
Eight years after joining the force, in 1974, he was promoted to sergeant. In 1976, he became a lieutenant, and moved up to inspector in 1985.
Chiarenzelli attended Housatonic Community College and Babson College in Massachusetts. He holds a Master Training Certificate granted by the State of Connecticut.
He is a past president of the Fairfield County Training Officers Association, the Fairfield County Chiefs of Police Association, and the Westport PAL.
During his career, he has served in line and staff functions in the Westport department and has been honored with numerous departmental commendations.
A resident of Easton, he is married to Susan Solomon Chiarenzelli. They have three children and six grandchildren.

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