Town of Fuquay-Varina Hires Police Chief, Posted April 23, 2015
Fuquay-Varina will soon have a new police chief. Town officials have announced the appointment of Laura Fahnestock as chief of the Fuquay-Varina Police Department, following a national search to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of long-time Police Chief Larry Smith in March. Chief Fahnestock was selected from a pool of 83 candidates following a rigorous selection process. She is expected to be on the job on June 1, 2015.
Fahnestock has served as a distinguished law enforcement officer for the past twenty-four years in a variety of roles with the City of Rocky Mount bringing a wealth and breadth of knowledge and experience to her new position as Chief of Police in Fuquay-Varina.
Currently, Fahnestock serves as Captain and Division Commander over Patrol Services for the City of Rocky Mount Police Department where she supervises 105 authorized positions. Previous roles with the City of Rock Mount Police Department include Captain/Division Commander of the Criminal Investigative Division; Captain/Division Commander for the Uniform Operations Division; Lieutenant/Shift Commander for the Uniform Operations Division; Lieutenant/Administrative Support Commander; Lieutenant/Watch Commander for the Uniform Operations Division; Sergeant/Administrative Support Supervisor; Administrative Police Sergeant; Precinct Sergeant for the Uniform Operations Division; Police Training Corporal; Community Relations Officer; and Police Officer.
"The City of Rocky Mount is to be commended for providing Laura with the opportunities to position herself to take on the responsibilities of the police chief position,” said Mayor John W. Byrne. “Laura brings a record of effective and collaborative leadership and a commitment to innovative policing with a strong emphasis on community policing.”
“I am very excited and proud that Laura Fahnestock has accepted my offer to be Fuquay-Varina's next police chief. Laura’s twenty-four years of law enforcement experience and education are impressive and particularly her leadership experience will add significant value to what is a growing and transforming Fuquay-Varina,” said Town Manager Adam Mitchell. “Laura’s history of advancing within the law enforcement profession and utilizing her expansive skill set to build relationships within the community and implement innovative programs to proactively address crime before it happens, makes her a natural fit for a Fuquay-Varina Police Department that is known for its success community policing.”
Fahnestock is a native of Wake County. She holds an associate’s degree in Criminal Justice from Wake Technical Community College, a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and Public Policy from NC Wesleyan College and a Masters of Business Administration from Northcentral University. She is a graduate of the NC State University’s Administrative Officers Management Program and the UNC School of Government’s Municipal and County Administration Program.
Fahnestock is enthusiastic about serving in Fuquay-Varina while also very proud of her service in Rocky Mount. “It has been an honor and a privilege to serve twenty-four years in law enforcement in the City of Rocky Mount and to work with the men and women of the Rocky Mount Police Department. I will certainly miss the people here and the community I served throughout the years. The relationships developed will last a lifetime. The officers here are professional and dedicated. I am proud of the work we have accomplished together to improve the quality of life for this community,” Laura said. “I am also excited about this opportunity as a police chief with the Town of Fuquay-Varina. Becoming a police chief is a professional goal that I have been preparing for over the years. I have a passion for law enforcement and community policing and, I will be focusing on continuing to deliver the highest level of professional policing service to the citizens of Fuquay-Varina.”
Laura is married to Van Fahnestock. Their daughter, Victoria Leigh, is completing her freshman year at Appalachian State University.