After over a decade of service Lake Stevens Police Chief Randy Celori has signed a separation agreement with the City of Lake Stevens.
Mayor Vern Little, Councilmember John Spencer and City Administrator Jan Berg met with Celori on Monday, Nov. 5 and agreed to the separation. Both sides felt that it would be best for the city to find new leadership.
“His employment contract includes a piece where we can mutually decide to end the contract,” Berg said. “It all ended amicably. There is no doubt that he has left a positive mark within the community.”
Celori has been instrumental in creating a strong working relationship with the Lake Stevens School District, which is unique within most communities.
“The mayor and I agreed that it may be better for the city to look for a different leadership style,” Celori said.
Neither party feels that the separation is anything but amicable.
“I have no hard feelings. I’m opening a new door in my life,” Celori said. “I am very proud of what the police department has accomplished in my tenure. We grew significantly through annexation and I’m proud that. The police officers have established a great relationship with citizens and government agencies within the city. I’ve always given 100 percent to the community, it’s like my second home. ”
Lake Stevens School District Director of Communications Arlene Hulten spoke to the city council on Monday, Nov. 12 and expressed the district’s appreciation of Celori and asked for continued support from the city.
“In 2007 Chief Celori invited the district to participate in a Safe School interagency Team Planning Program by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention… The goal of this training, and resulting quarterly meetings, focuses on sharing information about students of concern and addressing issues before they become dangerous to the student or school. The partnership established as a result of this training and quarterly meetings, is one we very much desire to continue,” Hulten told the council.
She also stressed the importance of a continued partnership in the future.
“This type of relationship between school district and a police department is unique and one we highly value,” she said. “These are all traits and services that are important to our district and we hope to work with you as you make this leadership transition.”
Currently, Commander Dan Lorentzen is acting as interim chief but the city does plan to recruit candidates to fill the position. They are also considering recruiting from within the department as well.
Some citizens have asked the city to look into contracting their police services with the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office, however, the city has decided not to go in that direction. The Lake Stevens Police Department will continue to provide police services to the community Berg said.
Celori has worked within the Lake Stevens Police Department since the mid 1990s and served in the U.S. Army for 16 years. He has also served many years on the Lake Stevens Chamber of Commerce Board including President where he was instrumental in keeping the annual Ironman 70.3 in Lake Stevens.
“I’m going to take some time off and spend some extra time with my boys. I’m in no rush to look for work and planned on retiring in a few months,” Celori said. “I think I’m going to do a little bit of traveling and visit family.”
The Lake Stevens Police Department currently employs 25 officers plus staff.