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COUCH'S CORNER: McFarland's new police chief a great addition to city

In this week’s Couch’s Corner, I’d like to take the time to highlight the city of McFarland’s new police chief, Kenny Williams. Already, his positive impacts on the community since he was appointed are a testament that he was the best fit for improving public safety in McFarland.

Born and raised in Bakersfield, Williams has an associate degree in criminal justice, a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in public policy and administration. Williams initially began his service to the community through a 30-year career with the Kern County Sheriff’s Office. Upon retirement from the Sheriff’s Office, Chief Williams had more to give.

Coming out of retirement, Williams took a nine-year assignment as lieutenant at Cal State Bakersfield. The rank of lieutenant is the No. 2 in charge at CSUB’s police department. Williams was highly recommended by all who served the public with him to attain the assignment of chief in McFarland.

Recently, I had the honor of administering the oath of office to Williams. His loving wife had the honor of pinning his chief badge on his uniform.

Chief Williams has focused on building trust and strengthening the positive relationships McFarland PD has with its residents. He has spoken to the community at church services. Furthermore, by working with McFarland’s Lions Club and Chamber of Commerce, Williams has organized “Coffee with a Cop” (drive-thru during COVID restrictions), where 200 cups of coffee were donated by Starbucks. Additionally, 500 baskets were donated to the community during Easter weekend for an Easter basket drive-thru. Currently Williams is working on an ice cream social event with the community to make things a bit cooler during the hot summer months.

I would be remiss if I did not include that Chief Williams has had a positive impact on his staff, as well. He promotes a well-balanced personal life due to the stressful nature of working in law enforcement for all his young men and women on the force. The chief has successfully equipped his officers with body cameras to improve transparency and accountability for everyone he was sworn to serve. He continues to stress positive police contacts with the community, a goal he has prioritized during his tenure.

When reached for comment, Williams added, “We should recognize the other staff members of the police department for the tremendous work they do each day.” He continued, “They, more than I, have more contact with the public and are the key in assuring we build a positive relationship with the community.”

Williams is the definition of a gentleman and a scholar and a great addition to the city of McFarland. For any questions related to public safety in McFarland, please reach out to the McFarland Police Department‘s Facebook page or website (www.mcfarlandCity.org/203/police-department) or call 661-792-2121. If you have any questions about a District 4 matter, don’t hesitate to call our office at 661-868-3680 or email us at district4@kerncounty.com. Have a safe week.

David Couch represents Kern County’s 4th District.