OAKWOOD HILLS – Veteran North Chicago police officer Valiza Nash has been named Oakwood Hills’ newest chief of police.
The Oakwood Hills Village Board unanimously voted Feb. 7 to appoint Nash to the position at a special meeting, Village President Paul Smith said. Nash will replace Peter Goldman, who was involved in a car crash last fall and has not been able to return and perform his duties, Smith said.
Nash, a Gurnee resident, is a sergeant and shift commander in North Chicago. She is a graduate of Northwestern University’s School of Police Staff and Command, and is working on a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice at Columbia College of Missouri.
Nash is believed to be the first woman and African-American police chief in Oakwood Hills, Smith said. There were three other candidates who applied for the position.
“I think she was the most qualified, hardest-working and most energetic candidate,” he said. “We just wanted the best candidate who can do the best job for the village.”
Goldman was a part-time chief, and all police officers in the village are part time as well. Nash will work part time until she retires from North Chicago in the spring, when she then will work full time. Smith said the village has not had a full-time chief in many years.
“A part-time department and chief is very good, but having a full-time chief is even better. … It really enhances the department,” Smith said.
Smith said that he hopes the department will focus its efforts moving forward on community-oriented policing, which could include police department-sponsored events for members of the village to attend.