Chief of Police Ken Thomas was promoted to Chief on January 21, 2011. He has been with the Kent Police Department since 1989 and has a history of innovative leadership and community outreach. He previously served as Captain of the Patrol Division. As an Officer and Sergeant he held various assignments within the agency including Patrol, Administrative Officer, Narcotics Detective, and Supervisor of the Major Crimes Detective Unit. As a Patrol Lieutenant, Ken supervised the Neighborhood Response Team, the Special Investigations Unit (Gangs, Narcotics, and ProAct), the Special Operations Unit (bikes and marine patrol), the Field Training Officer program, Crime Analysis, and was Commander of the SWAT team. Thomas is credited with leading Kent’s Community Oriented Policing Unit that has resulted in reduced residential burglaries and auto thefts.
Ken holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Central Washington University in Law and Justice and a Master of Science in Organizational Development. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and the Senior Management Institute for Policing, a program sponsored by the Police Executive Research Forum. Ken holds his Executive Level Certification through the WA State Criminal Justice Training Commission.
Ken is involved in several areas outside the operations of the police department. Regional and National Law Enforcement involvement includes:
- Western State Information Network (WSIN) Chairman of Executive Board serving Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington, as well as Canada, Guam, and New Zealand. WSIN is a national program for crime intelligence gathering.
- Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC) newly elected Vice President after serving several years on the Executive Board. Also chairs the Homeland Security/Intelligence Committee for WASPC.
- High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) Executive Board Member. The mission of the Northwest HIDTA is to measurably reduce drug trafficking, money laundering and drug related violent crimes and reduce demand by supporting treatment and effective demand reduction programs.
- Member of International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and FBI National Academy Associates (FBINAA).
He is also involved in the Kent community by:
- Member of the Kent Sunrise Rotary Club; past president and Community Service Chair.
- Kent Youth and Family Services past president and current board member.
- Actively volunteers for many community events.
“It is an honor to serve the Kent community and lead one of the most respected and effective Police Departments in the region."