By WECT Staff | March 24, 2021 at 1:51 PM EDT – Updated March 24 at 1:51 PM
WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) – UNC Wilmington announced on Wednesday that longtime University Police Chief David Donaldson will retire, effective June 1.
Donaldson has served at the university police department for 29 years, joining the agency in 1992 as an officer and later promoted to chief of police in 2003.
UNCW said under Donaldson’s leadership, the police department “implemented enhanced training for officers, dispatchers and university stakeholders to promote the preparedness of campus during emergency situations, including the early implementation of active attacker training for the campus community.”
Donaldson is also credited with overseeing the department’s facility expansion project in 2018 that “better addressed the facility needs associated with campus policing, as well as significant improvements to the campus emergency notification system.”
UNCW said the police department is now in the final stages of becoming nationally accredited.
“I feel honored to be able to say our university can be proud of its police department. The women and men in all roles and responsibilities are highly capable and dedicated to the department’s mission and the university’s role in helping make dreams come true,” said Donaldson. “I can say the same of the countless administrators, faculty, staff, senior officers and other colleagues with whom I have interacted for nearly three decades.”
New Hanover County Sheriff Ed McMahon and Wilmington Police Chief Donny Williams spoke highly of Donaldson during his tenure as chief of police at UNCW.
“I have valued our partnership with Chief Donaldson. I consider him a man of integrity and an excellent leader,” said McMahon. “He has always been willing to assist us in any area. I see him as a leader among leaders.”
“Even though the campus does not have the resources that we have, Chief Donaldson was always there to help. I wish him well, and whoever replaces him, I hope that they will have that same open mind to us working together,” Williams continued. “I realize people have their own priorities, but I think at the end of the day we all want to accomplish the same thing and work collectively towards ensuring the safety of our region.”
Major Chris Bertram, assistant police chief, will serve as interim police chief, UNCW stated.
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