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Olivet College alumna named Charlotte's first female chief of police
Jul 01, 2013

Originally published in the Lansing State Journal ( June 28, 2013

By Barb Modrack

CHARLOTTE Sgt. Lisa Sherman, a 24-year employee of the Charlotte Police Department, has been selected to serve as chief, replacing Bill Callahan who will retire on July 19. She will be the department’s first female chief.

Sherman was approved by a unanimous vote of the Charlotte City Council Monday.

City Manager Gregg Guetschow said Sherman will take over as chief effective on July 20. Guetschow said Sherman’s position will likely be filled internally from a list of candidates in the 16-person department who have passed a sergeant-eligibility test.

Sherman has held the rank of sergeant since 2000.

In his recommendation of Sherman to the council Guetschow said:

“I believe she will serve as an effective role model for the many younger officers who have recently joined our department and will set a standard for performance that will ensure quality service to the public.”

Sherman, 50, is a Charlotte resident with degrees in criminal justice from Olivet College and Lansing Community College; she also attended the Michigan Police Academy. Her husband, Dick, is a retiree from the Charlotte department.

“I am am truly honored and feel very privileged to take this position,” she said. “I have big shoes to fill and will continue to build on the strong foundation (Callahan) has built in the community.”

Regarding being the first female chief in Charlotte, Sherman said that while that is no longer unique in the area, she is proud to serve in that capacity.

“I was the first female officer here,” she said. “I didn’t think of my self as any different and it wasn’t an issue of any kind. I wasn’t treated any differently. I am proud of it by all means, but I don’t make a big deal out of it.”

She said she plans no sweeping changes but will sit down with the staff hear their opinions on where the department might head. In the meantime, she said she plans to continue working with the community and build on the community policing practices Callahan has implemented.

As chief-designate, Sherman will be working with Callahan until he leaves the department, leading to what Guetschow predicted will be a “seamless transition.”

Callahan has been with the department for 33 years and announced his retirement earlier this year.

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