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Colder becomes next chief of police for Huntington Police Department

HUNTINGTON – Huntington City Council on Monday, Nov. 1, approved Mayor Steve Williams’ appointment of Karl Colder as the next chief of police for the Huntington Police Department.

Colder is a retired federal law enforcement officer with 32 years of career leadership and investigative experience with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Colder was Special Agent in Charge for the DEA’s Washington, D.C., Field Division Office from February 2013 to May 2018. In this role, Colder directed all DEA operations throughout Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia and the District of Columbia.

Prior to this assignment, Colder was deputy chief inspector for the DEA’s Headquarters Inspections Division, Office of Professional Responsibility, from April 2009 to February 2012. While in this position, Colder led all domestic and foreign administrative and criminal internal affairs program operations at the DEA.

“I have known Karl Colder for more than six years, and he has a highly-detailed understanding of the challenges we have faced in recent years,” Mayor Steve Williams said. “His regional and national awareness from his tenure with the DEA will enable the Huntington Police Department to increase its already-heightened focus on destroying illegal drug traffickers who are peddling poison in our neighborhoods.

“Mr. Colder’s passion to aggressively fight crime in Huntington was evident when he was asked the question, ‘Why Huntington?’ Without hesitation, he responded, ‘I want to finish what I started when I was working in this area with the DEA.’ ”

Since his retirement from federal law enforcement, Colder has served as president of Colder Allied Consulting, LLC. He provides professional, consulting and advisory services, with a specialization in program performance and information management support, to a variety of private companies.

Colder also is a teacher/instructor of the Monroe Advanced Technical Academy’s Administration of Justice sequence for Loudon County, Virginia Public Schools. He prepares students for entry-level employment in the law enforcement and criminal justice system as well as entrance into institutions of higher learning in the related fields of criminal justice, political science and law.

Colder currently serves on the Seton Hall University External Advisory Board for the Police Graduate Studies Program and was appointed by the Governor of Virginia to serve on the Commonwealth of Virginia Secure and Resilient Homeland Security Panel.

Colder has bachelor’s degrees in social relations/criminal justice and political science from Cheyney State University and a master’s degree in human resources development and training from Seton Hall University.

“I would like to thank Mayor Williams and Huntington City Council for the opportunity to serve as chief of the Huntington Police Department,” Colder said. “I look forward to leading and working with the officers and civilian staff of the Huntington Police Department with the same dedication, passion, integrity, compassion and respect exhibited in my previous 32 years of service in law enforcement.

“While there are several challenges, there is a great opportunity to re-establish relationships with partners at the local, state and federal levels to protect and serve the citizens of Huntington. In addition, I look forward to collaborating with community organizations and within the city’s public safety and public health infrastructure. As Mayor Williams expressed to me during our recent meetings, we have the opportunity to set the standard for other communities to adopt as a model.”

As chief of police, Colder will oversee a department with a $15.4 million budget, 108 sworn officer positions and nine civilian staff positions. His annual salary will be $95,610.

Williams also applauded members of his community-based search committee that recommended two finalists to the mayor from an initial field of 16 applicants.

“I had two fabulous candidates from which to choose in Chief Colder and Huntington Police Lt. Phil Watkins,” Williams said. “The search committee worked diligently, and our entire city owes them a huge debt of gratitude.”

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