Town Would Lose 30 Years Of Experience

By Patrick Cronin

Hampton Union, Friday, November 18, 2005

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]

HAMPTON -- Local officials said the town's loss would be the state's gain if Police Chief Bill Wrenn is confirmed by the Executive Council to become the new commissioner of the state Corrections Department.

Town Manager James Barrington said he was happy for Wrenn but it's a sad day for the town.

"We would be losing a tremendous amount of experience and history," said Barrington. "Bill has been a great police chief."

Wrenn told Barrington of the nomination on Monday, who in turn notified other department heads via e-mail Tuesday morning.

The news came as a surprise to many.

"If Wrenn is approved by the Executive Council, which I don't see why he wouldn't be, the state's gain is the town's loss," said Selectmen Chairman Jim Workman. "Bill is good leader, department head, and if he leaves it will be hard to fill his shoes."

Wrenn joined the ranks of the Hampton Police Department as a part-time officer in June 1974.

After being named chief in 1995 he reorganized the command structure of the department.

"The state will be getting a wonderful worker and dedicated employee in Bill Wrenn," said Selectwoman Ginny Bridle-Russell. "He is a wonderful supporter of the community and hard worker with a wealth of knowledge that will be hard to replace if he leaves."

Bridle-Russell found out about his nomination at Tuesday's Budget Committee meeting, where everyone before the meeting was congratulating him.

Hampton Police Association President Steve Henderson said the news made its rounds around the police station very quickly.

"I think it will be a great challenge for him at this time of his career," said Henderson. "He has spent 30 years in law enforcement and this is a good opportunity for him."