AUSTIN, Texas – Art Acevedo has served as chief of police in Austin since 2007, but he is moving down the road to become to top cop in Houston soon. The transition date was not announced.
Thursday Chief Acevedo announced the upcoming change with the mayor of Houston, Sylvester Turner, at his side reported KXAN.
Acevedo reflected on his time in Austin. “I urge you to remember where we were as an organization in July 2007 and what we’ve accomplished since as a community,” he said. “We’ve made great strides and I look forward to the Austin Police Department’s continued success.”
Since Acevedo took over the reins of the Austin Police Department, he has not shied away from the public face of the role. Acevedo often lent a hand and APD’s name to various charity groups and non-profits. He is also known for not being afraid to get his hands dirty in the field, making arrests on occasion.
Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday said the news did not come as a surprise according to local news. “Chief Acevedo has been looking for two or three years now to move on,” he said. “We’re very happy for him and his family and this is a huge opportunity for Chief Acevedo to further his career.”
Austin Mayor Steve Adler has reacted to the report that Acevedo is leaving with the following statement:
Houston is getting a world-class police chief. Chief Acevedo has made our community safer and closer, and he is trusted and much loved by so many. Austin is losing a moral and joyous leader, and I’m losing a friend.
Losing Art Acevedo is a huge deal, and replacing him will be a daunting task in part because he gave so much of himself to his job and his community. But Austin is a safe city with a strong police force, and we’ll have talented applicants to take his place. We’ll shortly have a new city manager and a new police chief, and this gives Austin a unique opportunity to enter a new era in our history.
Acevedo leaves behind a legacy of community-driven policing efforts including efforts to put body cameras on all patrol officers and increase the racial diversity of the department.