Auburn, Ala. - Auburn Police Chief Tommy Dawson announced his retirement today, effective July 1, 2013. Chief Dawson has been on medical leave since early March due to Parkinson’s disease. Dawson made the announcement after calling a meeting with the entire Auburn Police Division on Tuesday afternoon to inform his staff. Dawson publicly spoke of his Parkinson’s diagnosis when he received the Auburn Chamber of Commerce Chairman’s award earlier this year.
Chief Dawson joined the Auburn Police Division almost 26 years ago. He is the son of Reverend Henry and Patsy Dawson. He and his wife have been married for 25 years and have one daughter. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Faulkner University and is a 2006 graduate of the 225th Session of the FBI National Academy. His professional memberships include the FBI National Academy Associates, the FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development Association, the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Alabama Association of Chiefs of Police. Chief Dawson worked in Patrol, Detectives and as Assistant Police Chief before being named Chief in 2010.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Chief Dawson as he works to stay as healthy as possible,” said Auburn Mayor Bill Ham, Jr. of the announcement. “He has worked hard on behalf of Auburn citizens for 26 years in the Auburn Police Division and now we want to support him as he takes care of his health and his family. Tommy has been an outstanding police chief whose leadership in the community and on campus will be sorely missed. We wish him the best in his well-earned retirement."
Assistant Police Chief Paul Register has served as Acting Police Chief during Dawson’s medical leave, and will continue to serve in that capacity until a permanent Police Chief is appointed.