MOLINE -- After more than nine months, the city of Moline finally has a new chief of police.
Darren Gault was sworn in Tuesday night; his first day on the job will be today. (July 31)
Gault has been an East Moline police officer since 1998, serving as a patrol officer, detective, sergeant and lieutenant.
"This is certainly an honor and I look forward to working with every one of you to improve our professionalism, teamwork and integrity here at Moline," Gault said. "I have an open-door policy."
It was standing-room only in city hall as Gault was sworn in with his wife, Michele, and their three children by his side.
City Administrator Lisa Kotter said the city received 35 applications, which were narrowed down to six finalists.
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City council members unanimously approved hiring Gault during a special meeting July 9.
"I'm very excited; it was a rigorous process and very thorough," Gault said. "I feel that allowed me to show them the skill set I have with 21 years of experience in the Quad-Cities to hit the ground running. I'm excited to get to work and to formally meet people in Moline as their police chief and represent this fine institution."
Gault will oversee 81 sworn police officers in the Moline Police Department.
Gault holds a bachelor's degree from Coe College and a master's degree in organizational leadership from St. Ambrose University. He also completed the FBI National Academy in 2017.
Gault replaces John Hitchcock, who retired on Oct. 15, weeks after his Sept. 7 arrest for driving under the influence in Scott County.
Robert T. Finney, the former Champaign police chief, served as interim chief while the city searched for Hitchcock's replacement.
GovHR USA, a candidate search firm based in Northbrook, Ill., assisted the city with a targeted search.