Message from the President - Chief Russ Hamill

It is with great humility that I will shortly take the oath to be the President of the Maryland Chiefs of Police Association.  I thank outgoing President, Chief Melissa Hyatt, and the outgoing President of the Maryland Sheriffs’ Association, Sheriff Mike Lewis, for their exemplary leadership over the last year - we owe both of you a debt of sincere gratitude for your efforts, which often occurred at great personal and professional expense.   

Our profession has had a tumultuous few years where, I believe it is fair to say, we have been vilified by many and painted with a broad brush by those who wish to sow discord between law enforcement and the communities we serve.  Over the next year I believe we, as law enforcement leaders in our communities, must re-direct the false narrative that peace officers are at odds with the people we serve. We can defend our profession, and the dedicated and resilient sworn and professional staffs of our agencies, who give so much to protect others, while recognizing there will be instances where we can do better and that we take appropriate measures of accountability to correct such actions. The bottom line is that the vast majority of the women and men of law enforcement in Maryland are guardians and protectors of everyone, even those who malign them, and behave with honor, distinction, and bravery everyday - and we must drive that message and understanding to the people we serve.  We must also further help to protect our communities by ensuring that the accountability we embrace within the law enforcement profession is equally applied throughout the criminal justice system in our state.   

I am also hopeful, that over the next year we can take even further steps in assisting the men and women of law enforcement by providing the much-needed proper resources for their health, safety, and wellbeing.  We all know that the physical dangers of our profession take their toll on our staffs, but too often the other dangers of our profession are overlooked, and we need to recognize the need for more robust mental health enhancements going forward. I believe that by working together, and with our other partners, we can make a positive difference in this important area and provide further for the welfare of our most important asset - the people of law enforcement and their families. 

We still have much to do and I thank you for your confidence in allowing me to serve in this position as I look forward to working with each of you over the next year. 

Chief Russ Hamill
Maryland Chiefs of Police Association