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Tillner named new police chief

David Tillner (left) is congratulated by Judge Craig Hall Monday night after being named the town's new chief of police.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen unanimously voted Monday night that David Tillner will be Collierville’s new police chief, effective July 2.

A former assistant chief of administration with the Collierville Police Department, Tillner has been with the department for more than 27 years.

The town has had two police chiefs in the last 40 years.

“This is a historic day,” said Town Administrator James Lewellen. “This is something that doesn’t happen that often.”

On Feb. 19, Police Chief Larry Goodwin notified the town of his intentions to retire on July 1.

Goodwin joined the Police Department in 1996 as a captain. In 1999, he was appointed police chief and served in that capacity since then. Before Goodwin, Dennis Joyner was police chief for two decades.

The town’s Human Resources Department posted the Goodwin’s position “internally” and invited applications from existing Town employees. Assistant Chief Jeff Abeln and Tillner both applied for the job.

Town administration consulted with the Board and established a selection process.

“Officials with the Tennessee Municipal Technical Advisory Service (MTAS) put together an assessment team made up of Police Chiefs and experienced professionals in the law enforcement field,” Lewellen said Monday. “The assessment team interviewed and tested each candidate in the key areas of law enforcement to evaluate their knowledge and leadership skills.”

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen also wanted employee input. A process was devised to select a random sample of employees to interview. Officials from MTAS interviewed 17 department employees on May 15. An independent consultant then interviewed a total of 21 employees later that month.

Board members also conducted one-on-one interviews with the candidates.

Alderman Tom Allen made the motion to promote Tillner, with Alderman Maureen Fraser seconding the motion.

David Tillner (left) is congratulated by Judge Craig Hall Monday night after being named the town’s new chief of police.

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