NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – A veteran of the North Myrtle Beach police force has been named chief of police for the department.
North Myrtle Beach Police Chief Thomas Dennis said he’s happy to be in the position he’s in and felt the timing was right in his career to lead the department he’s served for close to 25 years.
“Where else in the state can I have the job that I have right now, it’s the perfect area,” said Dennis.
Public Safety Director Jay Fernandez promoted Dennis to the police chief for the city of North Myrtle Beach. He has been the interim police chief since June 16.
“Tommy performed in the role of Interim Chief of Police just as we thought he would,” Fernandez said. “He is effective, fair-minded, has the ability to see the big picture and at the same time can zero in to help resolve specific challenges. He effectively relates to all types of people. We are glad for Tommy and know that our staff, our taxpayers and visitors will benefit from his leadership.”
He replaces former North Myrtle Beach Police Chief Greg Purden who submitted his resignation on March 13 after being with the department for only a year.
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Over the last 20 years, Dennis has watched both the police department and the North Myrtle Beach community grow rapidly.
Just this year for the city of North Myrtle Beach was voted the safest city in South Carolina, by backgroundchecks.org.
Dennis said he has always loved living in North Myrtle Beach and wants to continue strengthening the relationship between his officers and the community they serve.
“We’ve got a program where they go into neighborhoods and make contacts and solve different problems, we’re big on building relationships it’s key in this business,” said Dennis.
Dennis said the police department is nearly at full staff with close to 80 officers but hopes to continue growing.
Dennis first joined the North Myrtle Beach Department of Public Safety in 1997 and has served as an officer, detective, sergeant and lieutenant.