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Penn State Names New Police Chief

by on April 06, 2017 10:36 AM

Keith Morris, the current chief of the Allentown Police Department, was named Penn State’s new police chief on Thursday.

Michael Lowery has served in an interim role as University Police chief since January 2016. Morris, a 1995 Penn State alumnus, has spent the last 20 years on Allentown’s police force.

“I am truly honored to have been afforded this opportunity, as I have Penn State to thank for where I am today and have always wanted to be able to give back to the University,” Morris said in a release. “Penn State is a world-class institution, and the police department is well known for its professionalism, so I am excited about being a member of the Penn State team. I look forward to continuing the professional service that defines Penn State University Police and employing a department-wide community policing philosophy, as well as establishing solid relationships with the faculty, staff, students and community stakeholders.”

Morris, who will officially assume the position on April 20, has served as Allentown’s chief for 18 months, leaving the city with its own renewed search for a chief.

“The City of Allentown and the Allentown Police Department have been a large part of my life over the last 20 years, and therefore this was not a decision that was made lightly,” Morris said in a news release in March. “I believe that we worked hard towards solidifying relationships with our community. I am proud of every member of the Allentown Police Department and the dedication that they show each and every day in the face of adversity.”

Penn State began its search for a new police chief when Tyrone Parham left the university in December 2015 after five years as chief and 25 years with the department to serve as chief and vice chancellor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Lowery will move to a new role as director of operations for University Police and Public Safety.

Lexi Shimkonis is a news editor for Onward State. The Penn State sophomore is studying civil engineering. She calls Spring City, Pa. her home.
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