Stephanie Fealy Named New Crystal Police Chief

May 29, 2012 at 4:28 pm Leave a comment

Crystal will soon have a new police chief. From the Sun Post;

Stephanie Fealy and John Banick

Stephanie Fealy, left, who has been named Crystal’s next police chief stands next to the outgoing Chief John Banick

Crystal Police Chief John Banick is hanging up his uniform on Aug. 3 and Deputy Chief Stephanie Fealy will become the new chief on Oct. 1.

Banick will be hitting his fifth year as Crystal chief in June, and will total more than 31 years in the police field when he retires. “People in law enforcement retire early,” Banick said. “It’s a young person’s job. I know Stephanie is ready to go. Sometimes you have to step aside and let the next wave come in.”

He may be retiring as chief of police, but Banick has accepted a position at Wells Fargo as a corporate investigator. “I’ll just be responsible for one guy,” Banick said with a laugh. “Me.”

Though Banick will no longer be wearing his badge, he said that the job is a lifestyle and it may take some getting used to. “You never stop being a cop,” he said. “You always have a special place in your heart for officers and safety. You will miss the people and the relationships and I hope to maintain those relationships. You have to move on in life and have to look for the next great thing.”

Banick said there comes a time in a police officer’s life when he or she knows it’s time to step aside. For him, it was no longer caring for the gun range and driving fast. “It passes you by,” he said. “You don’t have that desire and I wanted to go out on a high note, and I am. We have good people.”

“I’m truly going to miss his mentorship that he’s assisted me with in so many ways,” Fealy said. “He’s done a lot to help me and I can never pay him back, but hopefully I’ve made him proud.” Part of the Crystal Police chief’s role is to prepare a succession plan for a new chief and for transitions. When Banick heard the news that Fealy would become the new chief, he said he was excited.

“She’s worked very hard and has done everything I’ve asked her to do,” Banick said. “She’s a great employee and she’s been a good follower before and she will be a good leader. She’ll do a wonderful job and we’re very proud of her.” The role, which was finalized on May 18, is something Fealy said she always wanted to do. Her father was a police officer for 33 years and spent 14 years as the police chief for Anoka. To her, it’s something that has always been in her blood.

“I’m very excited and humbled by the offer,” Fealy said. “I want to continue with what we’ve been doing and will continue the succession plan and bringing different ideas to the direction that we’ve set over the past several years. We will continue being fiscally responsible with the tax payer’s dollars.”

Fealy started with the Crystal Police Department 15 years ago as a community service officer and over the years, has worked her way up the ranks. She has worked as an explorer, training officer, background investigator, sergeant, patrol sergeant, field training coordinator, background investigations coordinator, neighborhood policing and as of late, deputy chief. Fealy has obtained an associates degree from North Hennepin Community College, a bachelor’s degree from Metro State University in law enforcement and is currently enrolled at St. Mary’s University for a master’s in public safety administration.

She has also attended numerous programs to help further her career including a 10-week program at Northwest University School of Staff and Command, the BCA management series for supervision and leadership, the Chief Law Enforcement Academy and Command Studio, a Law Enforcement Executive Development Program seminar by the FBI, the University of Park leadership program, a General Mills Leadership forum and is currently in an effective management program. Fealy has also received a medal of merit for a car crash in which she assisted in getting a man out of a car that was on fire and has won several exceptional performancess of the month and several commendation letters.

“She’s a mover and a shaker,” Banick said. “We’ve been pushing her hard. I’ve been showing her things for the last two, three years. She’s ready.” “I’ve been preparing,” Fealy added. “I don’t think it will be a hard transition. It’s something I can do and a change I will have to deal with.”

Good luck to the new Chief!


Entry filed under: Crystal, Safety.

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