After serving the community for 36 years, Police Chief Mark Whitacre is retiring from the Marble Falls Police Department. Assistant Chief Glenn Hanson will take his place following Whitacre’s June 28 retirement.
“It’s been a blessing,” Whitacre said. “That’s the word that comes to mind. Marble Falls has been a blessing all along. This city has always been home for me.”
A Marble Falls High School graduate, Whitacre joined the police department in 1985. A lieutenant at the time, he worked his way through the ranks and was named chief in 1991.
Whitacre dedicated his career to upholding the ethics and integrity of the department, he said, adding that he has worked to remain low key and humble. In fact, when he first became chief, Whitacre was given a framed quote by Abraham Lincoln, which he has looked to for guidance and kept in his office throughout the years.
“If I were to read, much less answer, all the attacks made on me, this shop might as well be closed for any other business. I do the very best I know how, the very best I can, and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won’t amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, then angels swearing I was right would make no difference.” — Abraham Lincoln
Whitacre believes officers should always remember their job is to serve the community above all else.
In addition to his job, Whitacre is a member of the Texas Police Chiefs Association, the National Association of Police Chiefs, and the International Association of Police Chiefs. He has served as a board member of the Law Enforcement Education Committee since 1998 and the Homeland Security Task Force Committee since 2004, both of which are part of the Capital Area Council of Governments.
Although his retirement plans weren’t official until earlier this month, he has been discussing them with city officials for the past six months, City Manager Mike Hodge said. Throughout that time, a rigorous interview process was conducted by Whitacre and city officials to select his replacement.
Hanson, who has been a member of the department since 2002 and assistant police chief for the past two years, ultimately received the city’s official recommendation.
“If you invest in us, we’ll invest in you,” Whitacre explained. “Promotions will come, and we try to keep them in house.”
During its May 18 meeting, the City Council approved Hanson’s promotion.
“Obviously, (Hanson) has been trained to fill that position for quite some time, and I think we’re all very happy with it,” Mayor Richard Westerman said during the meeting.
“I can’t think of anyone more qualified than him,” Councilor Dave Rhodes echoed.
Hanson will begin serving in his new position on June 29.
Although Whitacre said his post-retirement plans have changed several times, they remain centered on family. He plans to spend as much time as possible with his family, especially his six grandchildren.