NYPD Appoints First Black Woman to Chief of Patrol: 'She Will Break the Glass Ceiling,' Says Mayor

Rachel DeSantis
·2 min read

NYPD Juanita Holmes

The New York City Police Department appointed Juanita Holmes — the highest-ranking Black woman in NYPD history — its new Chief of Patrol on Thursday, marking the first time a woman will hold the position.

Holmes’ appointment was announced by NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea at a press conference, and will take effect on Friday.

“I think she is the complete package. I couldn’t be more proud to be here with her,” Shea said.

With 30 years of NYPD experience under her belt, Holmes is the highest-ranking uniformed woman ever on the force, and said she plans to lead with “equality, fairness [and] transparency.”

She began her career as an officer, and retired in 2018, only to return to the NYPD the next year, WNBC reported.

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Holmes said at the press conference that amid tense race relations in New York City, she hopes to restore the community’s “trust and faith” in its police department by strengthening relationships.

“People want to be heard, and we’re there to listen to them,” she said. “But they have to play an intricate part in crime reduction as well as improving the quality of life and strengthening those relationships… That community should have faith in their police department and that’s my ultimate goal, to make sure that happens.”

Holmes – who said she has 16 immediate family members who also serve with the NYPD — replaces Chief Fausto Pichardo, who reportedly retired abruptly earlier this month.

Her appointment was praised by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who wrote on Twitter that she “will break the glass ceiling.”

“She isn’t just an historic choice, she’s the right choice,” he said on Twitter.