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Howard named next HPD chief
Veteran officer to succeed retiring Slater
Tracey Howard mug

The Hinesville Police Department is staying in house for its next chief.

Hinesville City Council members voted 4-0 to appoint Assistant Chief Maj. Tracey Howard to be the next chief of police. Council member Dexter Newby was not at the meeting because he was in training in Tifton. “We went through an extensive process and recruitment in our search of a new police chief,” City Manager Kenneth Howard said, before recommending Howard as the choice.

Incoming Chief Howard will succeed Chief Lloyd Slater, who is retiring. Chief Slater spent 37 years in public service and his last day on the job is Friday.

“I am very happy to have Tracey Howard as our new chief of police,” Mayor Karl Riles said. “Chief Howard has been with the department for 33 years and his rise through the ranks speaks volumes of not only his character and ability, but also our department and the leadership that we have had for decades. Being able to hire such important positions from within the department is fantastic and having someone who is a native of this community as the new chief is remarkable. I look forward to watching the HPD continue to grow under Chief Howard’s leadership.”

City council member Vicky Nelson also welcomed making Tracey Howard the city’s next top law enforcement official.

“I think he is the best person for the job,” she said. “He has the expertise. He has the education. And foremost, he has the people skills to do the job.”

Howard was named assistant chief in February 2021 and was commander of the criminal investigation division prior to that promotion. A graduate of Bradwell Institute and of Armstrong Atlantic State University, where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, Howard joined the HPD In 1990. He has been a drug task force investigator, internal affairs investigator, training and recruiting director, adjunct instructor at the Georgia Public Safety Training Center, traffic accident investigation section commander and the HPD’s senior firearms instructor.

He also is a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Georgia Gang Investigators Association.

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