Mike wasn't flashy like some of Toledo's other chiefs - he quietly went about doing his job in the best way he knew how. As we worked together implementing a criminal-justice-wide computer system, we were in complete agreement that nothing we did with the system could put response time - and thus the safety of our officers on the street - at risk. I was always impressed that, despite any other political pressures or any other demands, Mike always emphasized the safety of the officers he led.
Over the years, Mike became a friend and I know he's looking forward to no longer having the responsibilities he's shouldered for a significant number of years. He has a significant list of accomplishments to be proud of - and he will be missed.
I also worked with Asst. Chief Derrick Diggs, though he was a lieutenant when we first met, and know he will be another excellent Chief of Police. I wish him all the best!
Here is the press release from the City of Toledo:
Toledo Police Chief Navarre to retire after 33 years of service
Assistant Chief Diggs tapped to be next department leader
Toledo Police Chief Mike Navarre has announced that he will retire from the department on October 21, 2011. The Chief will join Mayor Michael P. Bell at a press conference at 9 a.m. on Thursday, September 15 in the Mayor's office to discuss his retirement and the transition of leadership in the department.
Chief Navarre, 55 years old, was appointed to the police department on July 12, 1977. He was appointed Chief of Police in May of 1998 by then Mayor Carleton S. Finkbeiner, after the departure of Chief Gerald T. Galvin who was appointed to the chief’s position in Albuquerque, New Mexico that year.
The Toledo Police Department has had 27 Chiefs of Police dating back to 1867. Chief Navarre is the third longest serving chief, with close to 13 ½ years, surpassed only by Chief Ray E. Allen Sr. who served from 1936-1956, and Chief Anthony A. Bosch who served from 1956-1970.
During his tenure as Toledo’s “Top Cop”, Chief Navarre implemented the Retired Senior Volunteers on Patrol (RSVP) program in 2000, the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) in 2001, and also acquired a police helicopter in 2001. In 2003, the police department became nationally accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). In November 2000, the Toledo Police Department became the first city in the mid-west to utilize photo enforcement at intersections for red light violations.
The number of Block Watch groups in the city of Toledo nearly tripled during his tenure as Chief of Police-from 59 groups in 1998 to nearly 140 today.
Chief Navarre and his wife, Julie, reside in west Toledo. They have four children; their oldest, Lindsay Navarre, is an Assistant Lucas County Prosecutor. Chief Navarre’s father, James, retired in 1981 after 33 years with the police department, and his brother Daniel, a detective, retired in 2010, also with 33 years with the department.
As Chief Navarre departs Mayor Bell has tapped Assistant Chief Derrick Diggs to lead the department and will ask Toledo City Council to confirm his formal appointment as the next Chief of Police. Assistant Chief Diggs is 56 years old and was hired by the police department on July 12, 1977. He was promoted to sergeant May 2, 1986; lieutenant, May 16, 1990; captain, May 26, 1995; and deputy chief on October 10, 2001. He has worked in the Operations Division, Administrative Services Division, Community Affairs, Public Affairs, Recruitment, Investigative Services Division, Special Enforcement Division, Vice/Metro, and Internal Affairs.
"Chief Navarre has provided the Toledo Police Department with steady leadership for the last 13 years," said Mayor Bell. "It was a pleasure to serve with him as Fire Chief and a relief to know I could count on him as Mayor. I know that I can count on the same qualities in Chief Diggs, and trust the department will be well served under his guidance."