Former sergeant has been on Imperial’s force more than nine years
By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
Imperial has a new police chief.
Ryan Wisnieski, who has been with the Imperial Police Department (IPD) since October 2004, was appointed Monday night to the post that became vacant after former chief Rob Browning resigned late last year. The appointment was effective Monday.
His appointment came after serving as interim chief since Nov. 4, 2013, and before that as sergeant with the IPD.
Wisnieski’s appointment by Mayor Dwight Coleman and the setting of a $50,000 annual salary were approved on 4-0 city council votes.
Two applicants applied for the police chief position. The other came from outside the community in northeast Nebraska, according to City Clerk/Administrator Jo Leyland.
Wisnieski said he plans no major changes as police chief, but will be dealing with two open positions in the police department due to the recent resignation of Officer Spencer Rowley.
Rowley, who was hired a year and a half ago, notified Wisnieski in mid-December that he has accepted a position as deputy with the Chase County Sheriff’s Department. Rowley’s last day will be Jan. 19, Wisnieski said.
With Browning’s resignation in October 2013, that will leave two positions open. Wisnieski said they have received a number of applications for the police officer job that has been advertised a couple of weeks.
He hopes to begin officer interviews by Jan. 24, to be conducted by a panel of people. After that, he plans to invite finalists on ride-alongs with him, and make a hiring recommendation to the council after that.
He then plans to advertise for a police sergeant to fill the position he previously held with the goal of returning to a four-man department for 24-hour-a-day coverage.
Wisnieski, a native of Howells, graduated from Howells High School in 2000. He attended Wayne State College for a semester and a half, then completed an Associate’s Degree in criminal justice from Northeast Community College in Norfolk.
His hiring by the Imperial Police Department in 2004 brought him to the community. His first day on the job was Oct. 12 that year.
He and his wife Megan, who is employed at Allo Communications, have a son, Gavin, age seven and a first grader at Chase County Schools.