WILMINGTON — Wilmington Police Sgt. Ron Cravens has been appointed by Mayor John Stanforth to become the city’s new chief of police, the mayor announced Friday.
The promotion becomes effective Monday morning. Cravens will be honored in a swearing-in ceremony and open house on Thursday, Nov. 7.
“Sergeant Cravens has performed in an exemplary manner his entire career, but particularly when I asked him this January to fill the chief’s job duties in the interim,” said Stanforth. “Throughout his career he has assembled the experience, training and education, and knowledge of the agency, the community, and our inter-agency partners to lead the department into the future.
“His promotion to chief is the result of years of discipline, hard work, and integrity,” Stanforth added.
Cravens, who has been serving as acting Chief of Police for the Wilmington Police Department for several months, has served over 19 years with the department, including the last decade as a supervisor.
“I am honored to have been afforded the opportunity to be the Chief of Police for our great city,” said Cravens. “Wilmington is where my wife and I live and raise our family.”
Of the department itself, he said, “Our staff will focus on reducing crime and improving the quality of life issues for our community. The majority of my career has been in serving our nation and our community. I feel fortunate to continue that service with the exceptional members of this department as we continue to protect and serve the City of Wilmington.”
Cravens was selected after an internal city review of multiple candidates that included written tests, a review by a three-person team of retired police chiefs, and interviews. The Ohio Revised Code states that internal candidates must be reviewed for the chief of police position first, according to the city.
Prior to joining the Wilmington Police Department, Cravens was a member of the Wilmington Communications Center, where he fielded communications ranging from 911 phone calls, radio requests for information, and teletype requests through the LEADS System.
A 1994 graduate of Blanchester High School, Cravens served honorably in the U.S. Marine Corps, from which he separated as a sergeant, 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Division. He was a squad leader while deployed with the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit Special Operation Capable (MEUSOC).
Cravens graduated from the Basic Police Officer program at the Ohio State Highway Patrol Academy in 2001, when he began his law enforcement career with Wilmington Police Department, according to city records.
He completed his Drug Recognition Expert Course in February 2017 from the Ohio State Highway Patrol Academy. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Homeland Security through Trident University.
According to City of Wilmington records, Cravens possesses several law enforcement instructor certifications ranging from stops and approaches instructor, basic firearms instructor, patrol carbine instructor, sub machine gun instructor, less lethal instructor, direct impact munitions instructor, O.C. Aerosol instructor, chemical munitions instructor, and noise flash distraction device instructor certifications.
Cravens has helped to implement an updated range methodology of shoot, move and communicate to help officers responding to active shooter (aggressor) situations.
He has instructed officers from the Wilmington Police Department, Clinton County Sheriff’s Office, Sabina Police Department, and New Vienna Police Department. He also presented information and demonstrations to the State Fire Marshal, Wilmington City Schools Board, Clinton County commissioners, State Board of Regents, and the lieutenant governor in efforts of changing fire code to help students and teachers in an active shooter situation, according to the city.
Former chief Duane Weyand resigned the position in February.
The city will host an open house on Thursday, Nov. 7 in the Robert Moyer Community Room in the Municipal Building to celebrate the occasion. It will be held 4 to 6 p.m., with Cravens to be sworn in at 5 p.m.