Michael McLean to be appointed Chief of the Elmhurst Police Department; Interim chief has strong educational background, experience in community

At the City Council Meeting held on Tuesday, Sept. 6, City Manager Jim Grabowski will seek City Council’s approval for his recommendation in appointing Interim Police Chief Michael McLean to Chief of the Elmhurst Police Department. Chief Michael McLean has been serving as Interim Police Chief since April of 2022, following the medical leave and passing of Chief Michael Ruth.

Chief Michael McLean has more than 24 years of law enforcement experience, 22 years working for the City of Elmhurst. He joined the Elmhurst Police Department in January of 2000 after first working as a part-time police officer for the Naperville Park District. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Law Enforcement and Justice Administration from Western Illinois University, a Graduate Certificate in Public Safety Education from the University of Virginia, and he completed his basic police officer training at the Illinois State Police Academy in Springfield. He attended the FBI-LEEDA Executive Leadership Institute and graduated from the School of Police Staff and Command at Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety before his 2015 promotion to the rank of Deputy Chief. He completed the Northwestern University Executive Management Program and was recognized in 2017 with the NWU Executive Leadership Award. In 2021, he graduated from the prestigious 11-week FBI National Academy program for law enforcement executives in Quantico, Va.

 “I am confident that Chief McLean will provide excellent leadership and guidance to our police officers and staff within the police department,” said Grabowski. “He has proven to have outstanding management skills, serving in a wide range of assignments and supervisory roles within the department.”

During his initial assignment to the Patrol division, Michael achieved many specialties including field training officer, traffic unit officer, certified breath analysis operator, bicycle patrol officer, and crime prevention officer. He was a DARE instructor for seven years and was recognized several times by both the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists (AAIM) and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) for outstanding DUI enforcement. In 2004, he was assigned to the Community Oriented Policing Program (COPP). In 2005, McLean was appointed to the Investigations Division as a school resource officer at York High School. As a detective, McLean investigated juvenile cases occurring at Elmhurst schools and provided services to youth in the community.

Chief McLean was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2007 and was assigned as a Patrol supervisor. In 2010, he became the Administrative Sergeant, responsible for recruitment and hiring of new officers, coordinating and planning incident management for special events in Elmhurst, and supervising community programs such as DARE, Peer Jury, and the Traffic Unit. McLean became a certified trainer in active shooter response, a program he presented to government, business, and educational institutions. He also educated young drivers as an Alive at 25 program instructor, teaching teens to make sound decisions behind the wheel.

“We are extremely fortunate to have Chief McLean’s wealth of experience in our community. Elmhurst residents should rest-assured that as Chief, he will continue to guide our public safety team in providing our community with the highest standards of services,” said Mayor Scott Levin. “Mike really cares about the well-being of our community and has worked his way up within the department to this well-respected role.”

Chief McLean holds top degrees and certifications within his field. While at the FBI National Academy, he studied executive leadership, organizational management, law enforcement wellness, media relations, and counterterrorism.  He was previously assigned as the deputy chief of administration & investigations from 2015 to 2018, then as deputy chief of operations from 2019 until his recent appointment as interim chief of police in May of 2022.  Chief McLean is a certified eligible Chief of Police by the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police.

“I have been fortunate to have spent the majority of my career serving this community,” McLean said. “I have a great team of public safety officers and civilian staff, and I’m looking forward to leading them as we continue to protect and serve Elmhurst.”

Chief Michael McLean was set to be sworn in as Elmhurst’s Police Chief at the City Council meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 6.