Shaler police chief to retire after 35 years
Monday, February 3, 2020 | 12:01 AM
Shaler Police Chief Bryan Kelly’s message on the department website states that leading dedicated officers has proven the most gratifying experience of his career.
“It’s easy to come to work every day when you have a good group of people,” said the 62-year-old.
After 35 years with the township, Kelly, 62, has decided that it’s time to “pass the baton” to someone else. He is retiring Feb. 21.
Kelly has served as chief for seven years, currently overseeing a department of 26 officers.
He attended the Allegheny County Police Academy upon joining the department in 1985 as a patrolman. He later received promotions to sergeant in 1992 and lieutenant in 1999.
A Brentwood native, Kelly lived in Ross before relocating to Shaler in the early ’60s. He worked as an Allegheny Housing Rehabilitation Corp. maintenance supervisor.
Kelly’s family has close connections to the criminology field: His late father-in-law, Louis Jack Hieber, was a Shaler police sergeant. Kelly also has one brother who is an Allegheny County officer and another who is a retired corrections officer.
Hieber regaled Kelly with “a lot of good stories” regarding his profession.
“It seemed exciting and was a steady job,” Kelly said.
During his tenure with the department, Kelly has served on the boards of many nonprofits, including: Kops for Kids Charities, Allegheny Chiefs of Police Association, Western Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police and Shaler Hampton EMS.
“The cooperation between the commissioners and the (Shaler township) manager have allowed me to be a member of all of those organizations and be active in them,” Kelly said. “And 35 years ago, I never thought that I would be in this position.”
Deputy Chief Sean Frank said that Kelly’s accomplishments run deep. He credits Kelly for implementing technology upgrades, including the ability for officers to view policies and procedures on their computers and smartphones, facilities and equipment upgrades, acquisition of a grant for the hiring of a school resource officer and simulated firearm training.
“I certainly have had a very enjoyable ride here,” Kelly said.
The commissioners will name Frank as the new chief at the 7 p.m. March 10 board meeting.
“I have him to thank for a lot of things that I’ve accomplished here,” Frank said of his years under Kelly’s helm.
“I wouldn’t be sitting here talking to you about this, without the leadership that I enjoyed under him. And I had a similar path — I was a patrolman, sergeant and lieutenant, deputy chief, for this short transition period, and then chief in March.”
In retirement, Kelly plans to volunteer for Habitat for Humanity of Greater Pittsburgh, play golf and exercise at the gym.
Kelly’s son, Keith, is expecting a son in March. Kelly’s daughter, Melissa, has a daughter, Aubree Sears.