Rachel Swann confirmed as Derbyshire Constabulary’s new chief constable

Derbyshire’s police and crime panel has “unanimously” backed the appointment of Rachel Swann as the first female chief constable of Derbyshire Constabulary.

Aug 14, 2020
By Paul Jacques
Rachel Swann

After a full confirmation hearing, which included written submissions and questioning Mrs Swann in depth, the panel said it “unanimously supported” the police and crime commissioner’s (PCC) preferred candidate.

Commenting after the hearing, PCC Hardyal Dhindsa said: “The panel agreed that Rachel is an outstanding strategic leader and wholeheartedly endorsed my proposal. I’m absolutely delighted as I believe that she will be an exceptional chief constable, totally focused on keeping our communities safe.

“Her refreshing and positive approach to partnership working has also been put to the test in the most challenging of circumstances, including the major incident at Toddbrook Reservoir and of course as leader of the Local Resilience Forum during the pandemic.”

Mr Dhindsa added: “Most telling of all though was the overwhelming number of messages of support and positivity from her colleagues and peers when Rachel was announced as my preferred candidate. She is now the first female chief constable of Derbyshire Constabulary and a diversity champion in her own right. I am aware that she has inspired other young women to follow in her footsteps and join the police force and I am proud to have her on my team.

“I am looking forward to working with Rachel and tackling the issues that matter most to Derbyshire residents. I have every faith that her varied policing experience and proven strength in leadership across three East Midlands forces will ensure that policing in the county goes from strength to strength in the future.”

Mrs Swann’s suitability for the role was put to the test during a robust assessment process, which included the delivery of a presentation before a community panel, media exercise and final interview.

Mrs Swann said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be Derbyshire’s new chief constable.

“During my time as deputy I have seen just how remarkable the communities across the county are – from the incredible resilience of those in Whaley Bridge, to the brilliant community work during the flooding late last year, to the current unprecedented national Covid-19 emergency, which has seen fantastic examples of our communities and partnerships pulling together.

“Those same emergencies have also shown the incredible dedication and professionalism of the officers and staff that I am now so proud to lead.

“I have, from former Chief Constable Peter Goodman, inherited a force that is well set to face the many challenges that policing faces in the modern age, that is moving towards better representing those communities that we serve, fighting crime, bringing offenders to justice and protect those most at risk from criminality and harm in its many forms.”

Mrs Swann joined Derbyshire Constabulary in February 2018 as deputy chief constable from Northamptonshire Police.

Initially appointed as assistant chief constable of the Northamptonshire force, she was promoted to deputy chief constable in 2017.

Her policing career began with Leicestershire Police in 1994. Rising through the ranks, Mrs Swann took a key command role for the Team GB Olympic training camp at Loughborough University.

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