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  • Pasadena Police Department

  • Phillip L. Sanchez: Chief of Police

    Phillip L. Sanchez 

    Phillip L. Sanchez
    Chief of Police

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  • About the Chief

    Prior to his appointment as Chief of Police for the City of Pasadena, Phillip L. Sanchez served as Deputy Chief at the Santa Monica Police Department. He was the first Deputy Chief in the history of the department and held a variety of commands throughout his distinguished career, including: Operations Division, Criminal Investigations Division, Administrative Services Division and Internal Affairs Section.

    Chief Sanchez has an extensive background in police tactics and community policing. He has received the Santa Monica Police Department Medal of Courage twice for heroic actions during tactical operations. He served as the incident commander for several critical incidents, including a hostage situation at the Santa Monica Pier in 2004. He is also the recipient of the department’s Medal of Merit for development of Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT). He has been honored as Officer of the Year by the Rotary Club of Santa Monica, the Optimist Club of Santa Monica, and the Santa Monica Elks.

    Chief Sanchez earned his bachelor’s degree in management from the University of Redlands and his master’s degree in security studies from the United States Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, where he graduated with honors and received the Curtis H. “Butch” Straub Award for exemplary academics and leadership. He is also a graduate of the Senior Management Institute for Police, the FBI National Academy, and the California Commission of Police Officer Standards and Training (POST) Command College for Executive Leadership, where he received the Hank E. Koehn Award for excellence in leadership.

    Chief Sanchez is a strong proponent of education. For the past 10 years he has taught at the Orange County Sheriff’s Academy as an adjunct instructor and frequently lectures at local schools, colleges and universities on a variety of topics including civil rights and the law, homeland security and mass casualty response. He recently was selected to serve on an advisory commission that is exploring the development of a course in homeland security for Santa Monica Community College. He was also selected to serve on a Department of Homeland Security Work Group, which is responsible for developing an information sharing portal for emergency managers.

    Chief Sanchez was an Eagle Scout, the highest rank attainable with the Boy Scouts of America, and participated in the 1974 Rose Parade carrying a banner that announced the float honored with the Queen’s Trophy. He remains active in Boy Scouts and has presented the Eagle Scout Award to many young men.

    Chief Sanchez is a member of the California Police Chiefs Association, for which he recently completed service as a board member, the Police Executive Research Forum and the Hispanic American Police Commander Officers Association, for which he formerly served as a vice president. He is an avid bicyclist and enjoys reading. He and his wife Deborah live in Orange County and have four adult children and three grandchildren.