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Michael A. Gibson, 23-Year Veteran Of U.Va., Named  Interim Chief Of University Police Department

October 13, 2005 -- University Executive Vice President Leonard W. Sandridge today named Michael A. Gibson, a 23-year veteran of the University of Virginia Police Department, to a one-year, interim appointment as chief of police.

Gibson will replace Paul E. Norris Jr., who resigned last month to assume a similar position at the Indianapolis campus of Indiana University-Purdue University.

Gibson, 46, has moved through the ranks at U.Va., starting in 1982 as a patrol officer. He later served as a general investigator, narcotics investigator, sergeant and shift commander. For the past five years, Gibson has been commander of operations and investigations.

Gibson also has continued his police education during his career, focusing on leadership training and development in more recent years. He graduated from the National Criminal Justice Command College, an intensive program through the University’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies. 

“The University Police Department is a critical function of our community, and it is important that we provide a smooth transition in leadership,” Sandridge said.  “I believe Mike Gibson has the skills and experience to guide the department through this change, while at the same time keeping the operation moving forward.”

Gibson views his department colleagues as extended family, and credits them as one of the major reasons for his length of service.  “They have made this place what it is,” he said. “I have devoted my career to the University and made a long-term personal investment in the University Police Department. “

Gibson said he believes that being a police officer in a university environment brings an added dimension to police work that few people appreciate.   “You do your job as a police officer,” he said, “but you also have the opportunity to be a teacher and a mentor to young adults.”

The University will conduct a full search for a chief of police over the course of the next year.

Contact: Carol Wood, (434) 924-6189

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Contact the Office of University Relations at (434) 924-7116. Television reporters should contact the TV News Office at (434) 924-7550.

SOURCE: U.Va. News Services

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