Missoula hires new police chief from California Highway Patrol ranks

(KPAX) There’s a new man at the helm of the Missoula Police Department.

Mayor John Engen announced Wednesday morning that Jaeson D. White, an assistant chief with the California Highway Patrol, will serve as the next Missoula Chief of Police.

White has nearly 28 years of law enforcement experience and has worked for the California Highway Patrol since 1995 in increasingly responsible roles across a wide breadth of duties.

He earned an undergraduate degree in public administration with a concentration in Criminal Justice from California State University, Chico, and a J.D. degree from McGeorge School of Law with a focus on governmental affairs. He is a member of the California Bar and holds an attorney’s license.

White also completed the California Peace Officer Standards and Training Command College and is a distinguished graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy.

White believes strongly in partnerships with the public and community stakeholders and is committed to building teamwork and creating new programs. His policing philosophy is in keeping with the 21st Century Policing Model, according to a news release.

“His extensive experience in the field and in administration prepared him for the opportunity to lead our department and join my leadership team,” Engen said. “I believe the Missoula Police Department has the trust and respect of those we serve, and Assistant Chief White will lead a department that is on solid footing.”

White’s appointment as chief is subject to confirmation by the Missoula City Council pending a background investigation and the meeting of all Montana statutory requirements.

His first day as chief is tentatively scheduled for March 1, 2020. Capt. Mike Colyer will continue to serve as interim Chief of Police until then. A total of five candidates were interviewed during the search process of new police chief.