PTC’s new #2 cop comes from Fla. beach town
Headed small department just up U.S. 1 in the same county as Chief Clark
Peachtree City has passed over six current local officers to hire a new assistant police chief from outside Georgia, who like his boss has a pedigree in police management from Florida’s Atlantic beach communities.
William Edwin McCollom, the former police chief of the Village of Tequesta, Fla. was selected from a pool of 53 applicants, including six local candidates who are currently employed with the police department. A total of seven applicants were interviewed prior to the final selection, city officials said.
In his application package, McCollom notes that he left the Tequesta position in 2010 after more than four years so he could move to Wyoming to care for his sister. In Wyoming, McCollom said he worked as a general contractor for a company in Osage.
He headed a department just a few miles north of Chief H.C. “Skip” Clark’s former home of Juno Beach. Both towns are the same Florida county of Palm Beach.
McCollom was offered an annual salary of $91,011 to assume the newly-titled position in the Peachtree City Police Department, which previously did not have an assistant chief’s position; instead the police major served as the person in command when the chief was not available.
Prior to his four-year stint at Tequesta, McCollom served more than 22 years at the Delray Beach, Fla. Police Department, working his way up through the ranks to deputy police chief at a salary of $116,000 a year. When he left to take the chief’s job in Tequesta, he took a pay cut by starting out at a salary of $96,000 overseeing a much smaller department.
On his application, McCollom states that he retired from the Delray Beach position, which had 122 certified officers and 27 employees, compared to the Tequesta job in a town of about 5,500 people that had 25 full-time employees and six volunteers.
McCollom also noted that while in Tequesta, a departmental reorganization helped cut administrative costs by 24 percent while improving operational efficiency.
Like McCollom, Chief Clark too spent his early career in Florida law enforcement, joining Peachtree City in 2008 from his previous position in Juno Beach, Fla, a beach town of under 4,000 year-round residents.
McCollom lists a wide variety of police experience from his stint in Delray Beach, ranging from supervisory roles over the traffic and K-9 units to command positions from administrative and special operations to a shift commander role. McCollum also worked as a captain supervising a police district including a street narcotics unit, community patrol officers and community policing efforts.
In fact, McCollom notes that he developed a community policing methodology for Delray Beach that helps arm citizens with education “to ensure the citizens can act and will act as guardians against decline.” The program offered extensive training on “resource identification and how to use resources available to them. In the area this was implemented crime dropped and property values increased.”
McCollom lists a master’s degree in public administration from Nova Southeastern University in addition to a variety of professional training including the FBI national academy and several other classes for police executives.