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Galesburg's New Police Chief Eager to Serve

Aug 23, 2019

Captain Russ Idle joined the Galesburg Police Department as a patrol officer in 1994. On September 9, he will assume command of the department and its roughly 75 employees, including nearly 50 sworn officers.

“I’m humbled, honored, excited, a little nervous, all of the above," said Idle.

Idle is replacing Police Chief David Christensen, who is retiring after more than 36 years with the department, the last 13 as its leader. Idle said he will spend the next few weeks shadowing Christensen to learn what goes into being a police chief.

“I just want to continue to take care of my people, my officers, and set them up for success,” said Idle. “I also want to listen to the community and provide it with the service it wants and deserves.”

Idle said he started thinking about the possibility of leading the department following his promotion to Lieutenant in 2012.

“I’ve had the privilege to learn from great leaders within the GPD and I’m looking forward to utilizing that knowledge to lead the department and continue to serve the Galesburg community as police chief,” said Idle.

The city said in a statement that Idle is scheduled to attend the FBI National Academy next month.

Idle will be paid $110,000 a year in his new role. He is a graduate of Western Illinois University with a bachelors degree in Law Enforcement and Justice Administration.

City Manager Todd Thompson said in a statement that he’s “...confident Idle will excel in the role and lead the Police Department with integrity and accountability.”