After 34-years in law enforcement, Garden Grove Police Chief Joe Polisar is stepping down from the post he has held since 1998. He plans to remain at the helm of the Department, one of the busiest in Orange County, until December. There are 159 sworn officers under his command serving a population of more than 170,000.
Chief Polisar’s accomplishments in Garden Grove include lowering the crime rate to levels not seen since the 1960’s. Under his leadership, the department has maintained high standards of professionalism confirmed by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. Known as CALEA, the national organization conducts reviews of police policies and procedures.
The results of CALEA’s most recent audit this year is the best the department has ever received, says Polisar. Chief Polisar and the men and women of the GGPD will host CALEA’s upcoming November conference at the Hyatt Regency here in Garden Grove. GGPD was the first municipal law enforcement agency in California to achieve accredited status in 1988 and remains the only municipal agency in Orange County to hold that recognition.
“I am extremely proud of the men and women of this Department,” said Polisar.
“They have achieved great results with less full-time officers per capita than any other agency in Orange County. Their commitment to this community where I have lived for the last 12-years and raised two children with my wife Liz, is second to none.”
Chief Polisar also credits the community for the City’s public safety ranking. Congressional Quarterly Inc. puts Garden Grove in the top 100 safest cities in the country with populations of 75,000 and above.
“Our relationships with Garden Grove’s faith-based organizations, the Chamber of Commerce, very active neighborhood watch groups and non-profits are some of the best I have seen in law enforcement,” says Polisar.
“It has been a fantastic ride here in Garden Grove. I have no regrets about my decision to come here in 1998. But after 34-years in law enforcement, it’s time to pass the torch to someone else.”
Chief Polisar led the Albuquerque, New Mexico police department before coming to Garden Grove. He is past-president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, a Commissioner with CALEA and a graduate of the FBI National Academy, the FBI National Executive Institute and the Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at the JFK School of Government at Harvard University where he attended on a Pickett Fellowship.