Meet Short List for Los Alamos Police Chief

Staff Report

The search for a new police chief to replace Wayne Torpy who retired last month drew 40 applicants, of which 26 met the minimum qualifications. Of those 26, five have made the short list and will travel to Los Alamos this week for in-person interviews:

Roy E. Melnick, Chief of Los Lunas Police Department

Tenure: 2009-Present (21 years with police department in New Hampshire)

Salary: $100,101

Employees: 41

Education: Juris Doctorate in Law, Master in Business Administration and Bachelor in Criminal Justice, FBI National Police Acadamy

Comment: “My strongest attribute is the ability to bring about positive change, to restore public trust and confidence in police departments in need of change, reform, and the infusion of new ideas and leadership.

Donnie I. Perry, Administrator, DMV Compliance Enforcement Division for State of Nevada in Carson City

Tenure: 2012-Present (22 years with Greenwood Village Police Department in Colorado.)

Salary: $104,778

Employees: 90

Education: Master of Arts, Master of Science and Bachelor of Science

Comment: “I offer over 15 years of progressive leadership and management experience with five years experience as a municipal police chief.”

Bill D. Press, Chief of Fairhope Police Department in Alabama

Tenure: 2009-2012 (6 years with Miami-Dade Police Department)

Salary: $95,000

Employees: 70

Education: Ph.D., Public Safety, Master of Public Administration and Bachelor of Science

Comment: “As the leader of an organization, I hold myself, as well as those entrusted with the community’s welfare accountable for our individual and collective actions.”

Dino P. Sgambellone, Chief of Mansfield Police Department in Ohio

Tenure: 1991-Present

Salary: $85,758

Employees: 100

Education: Ph.D., Public Service, Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Business Administration

Comment: “(I) promote an internal culture of professional, safe, efficient, and character driven policing by clearly communicating with subordinates to set expectations, while collaborating with the management team.”

Philip A. Smith, Deputy Chief of Roswell Police Department

Tenure: 2011-Present (23 years with Salem Police Department in New Hampshire)

Salary: $69,369

Employees: 92

Education: Master of Science and Bachelor of Arts (Enrolled in Ph.D. program)

Comment: “(I) stabilized a police agency (in New Hampshire) with low morale, turnover and ethical issues; assumed the role of transformational leader, providing consistency, professionalism and vision…”

The salary range for the Los Alamos police chief position is $98,387 to 157,163.

The County is hosting a special “meet the finalists” reception with the public at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12 in Council Chambers at the Municipal Building, 1000 Central Ave.

Candidates will be available 6-6:30 p.m. to visit informally with attendees. At approximately 6:30 p.m., each of the candidates will be asked to make brief remarks about their background, experience and why they believe they are the best candidate for the job.

At the close of the reception, members of the public are invited to leave written comments. Additionally, they can email their comments overnight to the County Administrator at or drop them off by close of business Sept. 13 at the County Administrator’s office, Suite 350, in the Municipal Building.

The County will have senior management and community panels that will conduct all day interviews with the finalists Sept. 13. The finalist also will meet police officers and staff and it’s expected that the county administrator will extend an offer to the successful candidate before the end of September.







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