After nearly 29 years with the La Palma Police Department, Chief Terry Kim announced his retirement on August 3, 2023, effective August 18, 2023. “Chief Kim has been a strong and solid fixture in La Palma, helping to keep our community safe for many years,” said Mayor Debbie Baker. Chief Kim started with the City in 1995 as a police officer, rose through the ranks, and was appointed Chief of Police in 2016. City Manager Conal McNamara thanked Chief Kim for his service, saying “Chief Kim has been a consummate professional, shepherding the La Palma Police Department through challenging times including a budgetary downsizing and the COVID-19 pandemic.”
During his tenure as Police Chief, Terry Kim has been a steadfast advocate for community-oriented policing and has played a pivotal role in enhancing public safety and forging strong relationships between law enforcement and the citizens of La Palma. His dedication, leadership, and unwavering commitment to upholding the highest standards of professionalism have left an indelible mark on the department and the community it serves.”
Mr. McNamara announced that La Palma Captain Ron Wilkerson will be appointed Acting Chief of Police on August 17th. “I look forward to working with Captain Wilkerson as he assumes the role of Acting Chief, leading the men and women of the La Palma Police Department,” McNamara said. Captain Wilkerson started his career with the La Palma Police Department in 1996 and, most recently, has been a Captain overseeing both the Administrative and Operations divisions for the Department.
Captain Wilkerson has consistently demonstrated exceptional leadership abilities, a deep understanding of the community’s needs, and a commitment to fostering positive relationships with residents and stakeholders.
“I am honored and humbled to be entrusted with the responsibility of leading the La Palma Police Department into the future,” said incoming Acting Chief Wilkerson. “I am committed to building upon the strong foundation laid by Chief Kim and working collaboratively with our officers, community members, and partners to ensure the City of La Palma remains a safe and welcoming place for its residents.”
The La Palma community expresses its deepest gratitude to Chief Terry Kim for his exemplary service and wishes him a fulfilling retirement.