Jul. 9—Chief Kevin Lunsford has announced that he will retire at the end of July after serving four decades as a career officer for the Huntsville Police Department. A public reception has been planned for July 29 from noon to 2 p.m. at police headquarters. His office now has a different address than the station did when he started. The new state-of-the-art facility is just one of the positive steps the department has made under his watch.
"One of the things I'm most proud of is the inter-agency relationships that we have in this county between the police department, the sheriff"s office, University police, OIG and other law enforcement agencies. We work well together and that cohesive relationship is a huge benefit. I've also had support from the city and the opportunity to work with absolutely wonderful people," said Lunsford.
Lunsford was a recent recipient of the Law Enforcement Lifetime Achievement Award from the 100 Club of Houston, which covers a 32-county region of Texas.
"I think you just know when it's the right time. Things are going well. We've gotten a lot of things accomplished," said Lunsford, who began as a patrol officer at the age of 19.
"I come from a family of law enforcement. The opportunity presented itself and it was intriguing at the time. I was young and it sounded exciting," Lunsford said.
Three years later, Lunsford became a detective. He was promoted to the rank of sergeant after two years and served as a sergeant for almost 20 years. He was a patrol sergeant, a training sergeant, an administrative sergeant, and a special teams sergeant for bike, K-9 and SWAT units. Additionally, Lunsford was the emergency management coordinator for the city.
According to Lunsford, the perks of the job have included, "providing a service to the community and doing something new every day."
He reached the rank of lieutenant, commanding the Uniformed Services Division for two years, then commanded the Support Services Division that conducts investigations for three years. After the previous chief retired, Lunsford was appointed the Interim Chief of Police. Within 3 months, he became the Chief of Police and served in that role for 12 years.
Lunsford earned his Bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and a Master's degree in CJ Leadership and Management from Sam Houston State University, where he has also taught during his time as chief. He is also a graduate of the Leadership Command College of the Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas. He is now a member of the executive board of the Texas Police Chief's Association as liaison with the Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas and a member of Forrest Masonic Lodge #19 in Huntsville.
He married with 2 kids and 3 grandkids. After retirement, Lunsford said he is looking forward to more time traveling and enjoying his interests, but there was never a time in his life that he doubted the career choice he made.
"Thank you for the tremendous support. It has truly been an honor to serve. I have full faith in the men and women of the Huntsville Police Department to continue making me proud," said Lunsford.