OCTOBER 25, 2022 - Village Manager Kevin Jackson announced today that Shatonya Johnson has been appointed as Oak Park Chief of Police, following a comprehensive national search. Her appointment is effective November 7, 2022.
Johnson is the first female to hold the position of Police Chief since the Village was incorporated in 1902. Now in her 23rd year with the Oak Park Police Department, she most recently has served as Interim Chief since April following the retirement of former Police Chief LaDon Reynolds.
“When our search for a permanent police chief began about six months ago, we heard from the Oak Park community and knew that we needed to identify someone who could successfully lead our police department and not only continue, but grow the high-quality services that the people of our Village are provided today,” said Jackson. “It was abundantly clear throughout the process that Chief Johnson was more than prepared to step up as the absolute best person to continue serving our vibrant community in this capacity. Her experience and institutional knowledge of Oak Park are invaluable assets, as are her genuine concern and compassion for others. I am eager to continue working closely with Chief Johnson as we move our Village forward together.”
“I am honored and humbled to be selected to serve as the first female Chief of Police for the Village of Oak Park,” said Johnson. “It is truly historic! I take tremendous pride in serving [the community] with dignity and respect. As a leader, I value community engagement and I will continue to instill this concept of policing within our department. I am excited to embrace my new role alongside the talented men and women of the Oak Park Police Department as we strive to provide excellent police services.”
Johnson, the 14th police chief in Village history, began serving Oak Park as a patrol officer in 2000. Since that time, she has also worked diligently in the community as a neighborhood resource officer, juvenile specialist, detective, internal affairs sergeant, detective commander, deputy chief and interim chief.
Prior to arriving in Oak Park, Johnson served in a variety of public service roles including as a case manager with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, a correctional officer at the Will County Jail, and a patrol officer for the Cook County Forest Preserves. Additionally, Johnson was an adjunct professor of juvenile justice at MacCormac College.
Johnson holds a master’s degree in Organizational Behavior/Organizational Development from Benedictine University and a bachelor’s degree in Law Enforcement Administration from Western Illinois University. She is also a graduate of the Public Safety Staff and Command School at Northwestern University and the Senior Management Institute of Police in Boston.
More information about Johnson and the Oak Park Police Department is available at www.oak-park.us/police.