Borough holds open house Friday to meet police chief finalist

The borough has scheduled an open house for 5 p.m. Friday, June 7, at City Hall for the community to meet Gene Meek, finalist for the job of Wrangell police chief.

Meek resigned as Soldotna police chief on May 17, effective immediately. He had been on the job since July 2022.

“It was an amicable departure,” Soldotna City Manager Janette Bower told Kenai-Soldotna KSRM radio on May 20. “He’s a great person, and we wish him the best as he moves forward with wherever he may go.” She called the resignation a mutual agreement.

Meek moved to the Kenai Peninsula community of about 4,500 residents from Center, Colorado, population about 2,000, where he had served as police chief since 2019.

In an interview with the Peninsula Clarion newspaper in Kenai in 2022, Meek said he had more than 27 years of law enforcement experience and that he is always looking for a new adventure. He worked in law enforcement in Kentucky, Florida, Afghanistan and New Mexico before taking the Colorado job and then the position in Soldotna.

Wrangell Police Chief Tom Radke retired April 5 after four years on the job. He had moved to Alaska in early 2020 from Minnesota, where he worked in law enforcement for almost 30 years.

The borough advertised in April for a new chief, offering a salary of $8,362 to $10,564 per month. The deadline for applications was May 1.

The borough has invited the public to Friday’s open house with Meek; light snacks will be served.


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