In front of a small, intimate crowd consisting of family, friends and colleagues, Michael Carroll raised his right hand and was sworn in as the ’s newest police commander Wednesday afternoon.
The San Leandro native who has spent his entire 20-year law enforcement career with the Newark Police Department replaces whose last day with the department is today.
His new role is not one that the 46-year-old man envisioned he would achieve but it is a position he said he is honored to hold.
“I’m excited. It’s a great opportunity and also a real challenge,” Carroll said.
Carroll’s promotion became effective April 1, exactly 20 years after he was hired by the Newark Police Department as a police officer after graduating from the police academy with Evergreen Valley College in San Jose.
He will be charged with overseeing the police departments administrative services unit, which is made up of several divisions, including investigations, communications and records.
Carroll was prompt in saying his advancement through the ranks wasn’t a task he completed alone.
Carroll’s badge was pinned by his wife during the afternoon ceremony, with his three children, parents and mother-in-law watching nearby.
“I appreciate that for 21 years I’ve been doing this and for 21 years you’ve been right behind me,” he told his family after being sworn in.
He told his colleagues after taking an oath conducted by Chief James Leal that each of them had a part in his success.
“I’m overwhelmed by the support from everybody,” Carroll said. “I’m speechless. … You took a young college kid and made me into the police officer I am today.”
And he made sure to thank the man he will be replacing.
“I appreciate the fact you shared your wisdom with me,” Carroll told Douglas.
That intimacy and support he found within the Newark Police Department are reasons why Carroll said he continues to be drawn to the police department.
“My coworkers are very much like family. It’s a family environment,” Carroll said. “For me that’s a big thing.”
While Leal said it’s bittersweet that the department will say goodbye to Douglas, he added that the command staff will continue to serve Newark to its best abilities.
“Our future is in good hands here in the department,” Leal said. “I’ve watched [Carroll] continue to grow with this organization, and it’s a very proud day for me.”
A commendation ceremony for Douglas will be held tonight during the city council’s meeting that begins at 7:30 p.m.