Interim Chief of Police Dan Bellini was sworn in as Woodland's new Chief of Police on October 8, 2010. Approximately 100 people attended the ceremony, including city council members, California Highway Patrol members, Chiefs of Police of Davis and Winters, Yolo County Sheriff and various local and county officials. Representatives from State Senator Lois Wolk's office and Congressman Mike Thompson's office were also present
Chief Bellini was appointed Interim Chief following the departure of former Chief Carey Sullivan on June 30. Chief Sullivan left Woodland to become Chief of Police in Hillsboro, Oregon, a community of over 90,000 citizens near Portland. During his 60 day tenure as Interim Chief, Deven worked closely with Chief Bellini in order to evaluate his ability to fill the position permanently. As an alternative, the City could have conducted a nationwide recruitment process and solicited outside candidates to apply for the position.
"Over the last two months I have found Dan to be an excellent leader and manager. He works well with the community, the men and women of the Police Department and the other members of our City organization" noted Deven.
As an example of Chief Bellini’s leadership, Deven described a community policing project that the Police Department initiated within a Woodland neighborhood in response to a request from area residents in July. “This project resulted in our officers becoming more involved in the area and working with residents, other City departments and Yolo County to address issues that were causing criminal activity. Chief Bellini’s support of community policing projects such as this made a significant impact in a short period of time.” As a result of the community policing effort, adjacent public and private properties were cleaned up and street lighting improved in order to deter criminal activity.
Prior to making his decision, Deven met with the leaders of the Woodland Police Professional Association and the Police Supervisors Association. These two employee units represent sworn police officers and sergeants. “The leadership of these units expressed their support for Chief Bellini’s appointment. That is a good indicator of his rapport with the officers” said Deven.
Chief Bellini has spent his entire law enforcement career with the Woodland Police Department which began in 1987. Chief Bellini was appointed Captain in 2005 by former Chief Sullivan. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Genetics from UC Davis and Master of Science degree in Molecular Biology from Sacramento State.