New Kingsport Police Chief David Quillin
KINGSPORT — Veteran Kingsport police officer David Quillin has been named the city's new chief of police.
Kingsport City Manager John Campbell announced the hire on Tuesday afternoon. Quillin was one of two deputy chiefs at the department under former Chief Gale Osborne, and had been filling the position on an interim basis since Osborne's May 17 retirement.
“I am deeply honored by my selection and look forward to continuing my service to the citizens of Kingsport as chief of a highly trained, highly professional department composed of men and women who live daily by the traits of courage, integrity and justice,” said Quillin in a prepared statement from City Hall.
Forty-six people from across the country applied for the position, including the city’s other deputy chief, Dale Phipps, and eight current or former police chiefs at other agencies.
"We were very fortunate to have two very capable deputy chiefs, and they have a very excellent working relationship," said Campbell.
"We feel very good about where the department can go. I think we have a strong foundation and think David can certainly move us forward."
An assessment center process was used to interview the final 12 "A-list" candidates, said Campbell. The members were Bristol Tennessee Police Chief Blaine Wade, Kingsport Fire Chief Craig Dye, Johnson City Assistant City Manager Charlie Stahl, former Kingsport Human Resources Director Barbara Duncan and Alderman Tom Segelhorst (human resources director for Domtar).
Campbell had the ultimate say for the position.
"All of the assessment team felt all five were very capable candidates and did well," said Campbell. "It just happens (Quillin and Phipps) were above everybody else a little bit.
"It was a tough decision."
Quillin began his career at the department in 1985 as a corrections officer. He's held many roles as he's worked his way through the ranks: uniformed patrol officer, K-9 officer, vice detective, patrol corporal, training sergeant, community policing sergeant, member of the Kingsport Police Department Honor Guard, 10-year member of SWAT.
Quillin has served as deputy chief of police since 2001, first in the administrative bureau, then in operations. He's a graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigations National Academy and holds a bachelor’s degree in organizational management from Tusculum College.
“As the 14th chief of police, I look to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, city manager, citizens, those who came before and the members of our department today for guidance and support as we work together to ensure the safest community possible for the law abiding residents of Kingsport," said Quillin.
“While working collectively, I also look forward to moving the already high bar for standards, conduct and performance of our department to an even higher level through good, old-fashioned shoe leather police work and deployment of cutting edge technology alike.”
Gale Osborne's hiring as police chief in 2007 also came from in-house, as he had served as interim chief for six months following the retirement of Chief Mark Addington.