BART Police Chief Ed Alvarez has announced his retirement after more than 25 years of service with the department. His last day on the job will be May 1, and Deputy Chief Kevin Franklin will be appointed interim chief. Alvarez has led the department since January 2020, and during his tenure, the department launched its progressive policing and community engagement bureau, which was among the first of its kind for a U.S. transit agency.
The bureau staffs unarmed and trained Transit Ambassadors and Crisis Intervention Specialists to bolster visible staff presence. According to BART, the department worked with the Center for Policing Equity on an analysis of BART PD's practices and behaviors, thus becoming the first U.S. transit law enforcement agency to undergo such a review.
Alvarez said in a statement, "It's been the greatest honor of my career to lead the people of the BART Police Department for the last four years as we've welcomed the Bay Area back to transit in the wake of the pandemic. I'm proud of all the work we've done as we've strived together to make BART PD one of the most progressive and community-oriented police departments in the nation."
The retirement of Alvarez marks the end of an era at BART, and his contributions to the department have been significant. His leadership has helped BART PD become more progressive and community-oriented, and his legacy will undoubtedly have a lasting impact on the department and the community it serves.
Overall, Alvarez's retirement is a reminder that leaders come and go, but the impact they make can last a lifetime. The BART PD will undoubtedly continue to build on the foundation laid by Alvarez, and the community it serves will continue to benefit from his contributions for years to come.
San Francisco Examiner. “BART Police Chief Ed Alvarez will be retiring this spring.” San Francisco Examiner, 5 April 2023, https://www.sfexaminer.com/news/bay-area-news/bart-police-chief-ed-alvarez-will-be-retiring-this-spring/article_d910db16-d3e8-11ed-ab87-fbcaa40cf847.html.