City Council voted unanimously in October to promote long-time El Campo Assistant Police Chief Gary Williamson to the department’s top post.
Williamson’s first day as the ECPD chief was Sunday, Nov. 1, one day after current Chief Terry Stanphill’s retirement.
He was the best fit, City Manager Courtney Sladek said, “Gary Williamson is a man of deep conviction, strong character and integrity. His experience and education make him the obvious choice for our next police chief.”
The city considered three applications for the top spot.
“I continue to look forward to (serving) the citizens of El Campo. With the times, there are some unique challenges and I will meet them head on,” Williamson said Monday.
He added, “Chief Stanphill’s done an excellent job,” specifically pointing out the department’s honor of being in the Texas Police Chief’s Recognition program which recognizes in excess of 100 best practices.
Among the new chief’s goals is to continue and expand community policing efforts.
Williamson is only the sixth person in the ECPD’s 74-year history to hold the chief’s title.
A 20-year veteran of the El Campo force, Williamson is a Texas native who grew up in Galveston. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M before opting to enroll in the Alvin Police Academy.
After finishing the academy, Williamson worked for the Austin Airport police from 1998 to 2000. He was then hired on in El Campo.
Williamson’s wife Stacie, an El Campo native, is the Hutchins Elementary School librarian. The couple have two sons – Tyler who attends Wharton County Junior College and works with Donald Sutton, and Ryan who attends Texas A&M.
The 6-0 vote naming Williamson chief includes a $111,000 per year salary in comparison to Stanphill’s salary of $101,326.02.
Williamson replaces Stanphill who has served as police chief 10 years, replacing Terry Marek who served less then a year.
A reception honoring Stanphill will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 5 at the El Campo Civic Center. The public is invited to attend.