APD interim chief Darin Schierbaum named new chief of police

As the 26th Chief of Police, Chief Schierbaum will head the largest law enforcement agency in Georgia.
APD names new police chief
Published: Oct. 31, 2022 at 11:39 AM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - After a months-long search, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens has named Darin Schierbaum as his new permanent chief of police.

Schierbaum has been serving as APD’s Interim Chief since June, following the retirement of former police chief Rodney Bryant.

During a one-on-one interview with Atlanta News First, the 20-year Atlanta Police Department veteran said his top three priorities for the City of Atlanta included smart crime-fighting, continuing to grow the public’s trust and investing in the men and women who make up the Atlanta Police Department.

“After interviewing several diverse, high-caliber finalists for the position, I was happy, but not surprised, to find that we had the right candidate already at the post,” Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens said. “Over the last five months, Chief Schierbaum and I have spoken nearly every single day about how the Atlanta Police Department is working to enhance safety in our communities. During his service as Interim Chief, we have seen crime drop, significant arrests of gang leaders, and partnership with the community increase.”

Mayor Dickens went on to explain that his decision involved a number of factors including data, community response and his own gut.

“Chief Schierbaum is a constant presence in our community and has ably demonstrated his commitment to building those ties,” said Mayor Dickens. “We put out a survey. Over 2,000 people in the City of Atlanta filled out that survey and oddly enough it was 50% men and women. It was a diverse array of racial background and ages,” the mayor said.

Mayor Dickens went on to highlight some of the survey’s findings. Among them:

  • 60% of people said they wanted a chief who had a track record of building community trust
  • 73% ranked crime reduction among their top priorities in a new chief
  • 71% ranked honesty, integrity, and character as a top leadership attribute

“That’s Chief Schierbaum,” the mayor said in reference to the survey.

Chief Schierbaum joined the Atlanta Police Department in 2002 after 10 years with the Johnson County, Illinois Sheriff’s Department. He began his service as a Beat Officer in Zone 5 — Midtown Atlanta. In his time as Section Commander of Zone 5, he oversaw the public safety of major events including the 2018 College Football National Championship Game, the 2018 Major League Soccer Cup, and Super Bowl LIII.

Other roles included commanding the Community Liaison Unit, the LGBT Liaison Unit, the Hispanic Liaison Unit and the Graffiti Abatement Unit. He has also overseen the training of officers, including the implementation of recommendations from the President’s Task Force on 21st-Century Policing.

“I thank Mayor Dickens for the opportunity to serve this city and the incredible men and women of the Atlanta Police Department,” Chief Schierbaum said. “Atlanta is the city I love, where I have made my home for the last 20 years. I can think of no greater privilege than to continue being able to serve the residents of this great city alongside the civilian and sworn personnel who serve in a Constitutional, committed, competent and compassionate manner every single day. We will continue to aggressively target gangs, drugs and illegal guns in our city, while also deepening the bonds of trust and service between the force and the community.”

As the 26th Chief of Police, Chief Schierbaum will head the largest law enforcement agency in Georgia.

On Monday, Schierbaum stressed his commitment to crime-fighting and recruiting and retaining talented officers.

“Wherever I go, I want to make sure I am speaking up for them and acknowledging the great work of the police department and encouraging others to come and join us as we are on this journey together,” said Chief Schierbaum .