At the City Council meeting on Tuesday, August 31, the Andover City Council formally approved the appointment of current Police Captain Buck Buchanan to serve as the next Police Chief, following current Chief Michael Keller’s upcoming retirement.
Keller officially announced his intent to retire (on September 24, 2021,) at the March 30, 2021, City Council meeting, prompting the Mayor and staff to begin discussing the process they would use to fill his position. The City Code states the Mayor with the consent of the City Council appoints the police chief position. As such, Andover Mayor, Ronnie Price was highly involved in the process.
“With a position like this, with your community’s safety at stake, you want to make sure you get it right,” said Price. “I knew we had a couple of internal folks who might apply but I decided it would be irresponsible of me not to open the search up to outside applicants as well.”
The search officially began back in mid-June where a committee comprised of city staff and a police chief from a neighboring community interviewed several candidates via zoom and reduced the pool down to two. The final interviews took place in mid-August with the candidates meeting with a final selection committee made of city staff, the Andover Area Chamber of Commerce President, and another neighboring city’s Police Chief, as well as having the opportunity to meet with the other members of the Council separately over lunch and dinner.
While both finalists had different strengths that the community could benefit from, ultimately it was determined internal candidate Buck Buchanan would be the best fit for our community.
“Having known and worked with Buck for the entire 11 years I’ve been here, I’m very comfortable with this selection,” remarked City Administrator Jennifer McCausland. “Captain Buchanan will be an excellent Chief of Police for the City of Andover. I look forward to working with him for many years.”
Buchanan will officially take over as Chief in late September. Buchanan joined the police department full-time in 2009 and worked his way up to the role of Captain. Buchanan is well versed in the policies and procedures of the Andover Police Department as well as the strict requirements of their esteemed CALEA accreditation as he is a certified CALEA Accreditation Manager. Buchanan served in the US Air Force from 1988-1994. He is the first and only Andover Police Officer to graduate from the FBI National Academy. He is a Certified Public Manager through the University of Kansas Public Management Center and is currently in the process of completing his Bachelors Degree in Criminal Justice.
“It is the greatest honor of my professional career to serve my hometown community and to lead this amazing department into the future,” said Buchanan. “I humbly but enthusiastically approach the challenge of guiding and supporting the dedicated members of our department while also advocating for our community as we re-imagine community safety together.”