The board said it had appointed acting police chief Nick Secatore as the permanent chief on Monday evening. (Vanessa Leroy)
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LYNNFIELD – In front of a standing hearing at the Al Merritt Center on Monday evening, the Select Board announced that Acting Police Chief Nick Secatore will be head of the department on a permanent basis.
With the move, Secatore was promoted from captain to chief, succeeding former police chief David Breen. He took up his role as interim chef in February, following Breen’s retirement.
“Tonight this board is meeting to make a decision that will impact our community for years to come,” said Select board chairman Dick Dalton. “During your time as interim chef, everyone who dealt with you professionally knew you were the man for the job.”
Dalton added that Secatore’s experience as an interim chef showed his “broad skills and that he had passed all tests with flying colors. “
Secatore said he was overwhelmed both when he learned he was being considered for the job and later when he was offered the job.
“My thoughts were overwhelming in nature, not only because I had done (the job), but because now the future is defined,” he said. “The overwhelming was because I wanted to do a good job for the city and for the people I serve, the citizens and the members of the department.”
Secatore said he promised that when he took over as interim chief last February, the department would not waste a minute and “it isn’t.” He highlighted the ministry’s many achievements over the past 10 months, including its efforts to fully comply with the new police law.
“We did all of our deliverables and we said we would,” he said. “But this is not the end; it is the beginning of this new era of the police.
Secatore plans to go to the board of directors with recommendations to fill the vacant captain position “to cement our administrative structure” and will submit recommendations for a final new hire of Lynnfield to fill an open position.
“This is the short direction the department is taking,” Secatore said.
Dalton said Secatore was recommended by city administrator Rob Dolan based on an assessment conducted by the IMA group under the supervision of the Public Service Unit of the Massachusetts Resource Division. Dalton said three candidates were considered and Secatore returned the best score of the three.
Secatore’s climb to the top was quick. After achieving the highest score on the captain’s test, Secatore was promoted from detective sergeant to captain in August 2020, succeeding former captain Karl Johnson. Less than six months later, Secatore was appointed interim chief.
Dalton’s colleagues on the board echoed his strong support for Secatore.
“I couldn’t be happier with your choice on the valuation and I certainly agree,” said Phil Crawford, member of the board of directors. “I couldn’t be more proud to agree with this nomination. “
“When I look at you, I see the moral fabric and character that indicates that you are simply the best fit for the job,” said member Joe Connell.
Secatore graduated in 1997 from Lynnfield High School, where he was an outstanding Hall of Fame wrestler. A US Marine Corps veteran with National Security Clearance, he majored in Mathematics at Merrimack College and worked as a Financial Analyst at Fidelity Investments before joining the Lynnfield Police Force in 2007. He became a jack-of-all-trades. all done, serving as internet technology manager, court attorney, detective supervisor, training supervisor, and deputy city director of emergency management, among other duties.
A former veteran services officer for the town of Lynnfield (2009-14), Secatore is a member of the Lynnfield War Memorial Committee.
“I’ve known you since you were a little boy and who thought at the time that you would make a career in law enforcement or that one day you would be appointed head of your own department?” said Dalton. “Personally, this evening gives me great satisfaction to witness what you have done with your life and your career. The role of a police chief is more difficult than ever (and you) have the attitude and the temper to be successful as a leader.
Secatore recognized the contributions of former members of the department and pledged that he will continue the long history and legacy of the department as a community department “in the modern era”.