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Community Forum Set for Three Geneva Police Chief Finalists


You’ll have a chance on Wednesday night to meet the three finalists for Geneva City Police Chief. A moderated Community Forum to meet and interview the three candidates will be held at City Hall. In addition to prepared questions, residents and community stakeholders will also be allowed to ask questions.

The three finalists and their biographies as provided by the city are below:

James Chechak is currently the Chief of Police at the Waterloo Police Department and has over 16 years of experience as a police officer. He began his law enforcement career in 2005 when he enlisted in the Army National Guard and graduated from the US Army Military Police School in 2006. He served in the New York Army National Guard for 13 years, including a deployment to Iraq in 2011. During his time in the military, he worked with individuals from all types of backgrounds in diverse environments, gaining leadership experience and the ability to handle high-stress situations.

Chief Chechak became a certified police officer in New York State when he was hired by the Seneca County Sheriff’s Office, graduating from the Finger Lakes Law Enforcement Academy in 2008. In 2009 he was hired at the Waterloo Police Department as a Patrolman and was promoted to Sergeant in September 2017. While in the position of Sergeant, he supervised the road patrol, firearms program, department fleet, sex offender management, and the department’s social media and website. In September 2022 he became the officer in charge of the department and was appointed Chief of Police in December 2022. Chief Chechak is a proven leader with extensive knowledge of police department operations, personnel management, and budgeting. Chief Chechak is committed to the professional development of officers and is a certified instructor in firearms, less-than-lethal weapons, RADAR-LIDAR, and the Breath Analysis Operator Course. In addition to instructing inter-departmental training, he also teaches at the Police Academy.

As Chief of Police, he solidified the department’s policies and professional standards, successfully obtaining the department’s first accreditation status with New York State in December 2022. Chief Chechak serves on several committees in Seneca County including the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, STOP-DWI Committee, Local Emergency Planning Committee, and the Criminal Justice Advisory Board. Chief Chechak is committed to forging community relationships to enhance public safety and community development

Ronald Eveland is a lifelong resident of Geneva. Married to my wife Nicole for 3 years, and have a Great Dane named Ivan, and a Chocolate Lab named Porter.

I am a Geneva High School graduate and a veteran of the United States Air Force. I served for 6-years as an Aircraft Armament Systems Specialist on the F-16 Fighter Jet and separated as a Staff Sergeant in 2011. During my enlistment, I served at Osan Air Base, South Korea for 1 year, and completed one tour to Balad Air Base, Iraq. While stateside, I was stationed at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, and conducted hundreds of military funerals spanning across 4 states as a member of the Honor Guard. My military service gave me a solid foundation on professionalism, respect, integrity, and determination.

My father worked for the Geneva Police Department for 20 years, and it was a life-long goal of mine to serve the Geneva community as well. I am proud to say that I am now a 3rd generation Geneva Police Officer. I began serving as a law enforcement officer when I was hired by the New York State Park Police in November 2013. I was first assigned to the Thousand Island Region stationed out of Alexandria Bay, NY. I then transferred to the Finger Lakes Region and worked out of Ithaca, NY. I made the decision to lateral transfer to Geneva to serve as a Police Officer in November 2015. Since then, I have served as a Police Officer, Patrol Sergeant, Lieutenant, and Acting Chief of Police. I currently am assigned as the Lieutenant overseeing the Road Patrol. Some duties in my current position include scheduling, payroll, event planning, evidence management, grant writing, accreditation, fleet management, department quartermaster, and training officer.

Training and Experience: New York State Park Police Academy, Geneva Police Department’s first and only Nationally Certified Drug Recognition Expert, Accreditation Program Manager, Basic Investigative Photography, Disability Awareness Instructor, Standardized Field Sobriety Test Instructor, Emergency Vehicle Operation Instructor, Field Training Officer, Evidence Technician, Hostage Negotiator, Crisis Intervention Team Member, High Angle Rope Rescue, Ice Water Rescue, Personal Watercraft Operator and Marine Law Enforcement.

Community involvement: Active mentor in the Bigs in Blue Program, part of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Rochester, member of the Nester Hose Fire Department, Geneva American Legion Winnek Post 396 (Past 3rd Vice Commander), past Board of Trustee Member for Historic Geneva, current Vice President of the Geneva PBA. My hobbies include motorcycles, boating on Seneca Lake, antiques, and learning about local history.

James “Jimmer” McCormack is a lifelong resident of Geneva with an extensive law enforcement career spanning over 37 years. Throughout his career, McCormack has demonstrated strong leadership skills while always prioritizing integrity and fairness.

McCormack spent 30 years as a New York State Trooper before retiring in 2016. During his time with the New York State Police, he served as the Emergency Management Sergeant. In this role, he worked closely with various organizations, including the New York State Emergency Management Office (SEMO) and the Department of Health (DOH), to update emergency response plans and procedures. This involved addressing chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats. Drills and exercises were scheduled to enhance response times and communication.

In addition, McCormack has supervised State Troopers who served as School Resource Officers and ensured the development of emergency action plans for multiple public school districts. He also played a significant role in the New York State Police Benevolent Association as President, Vice-President, and Troop E Delegate. Representing over 4,300 troopers, sergeants, investigators, and commissioned officers, he negotiated contracts, handled grievances, participated in arbitrations, and advocated for wage increases, overtime compensation, and leave time.

Before joining the New York State Police, McCormack gained valuable experience as a State Trooper, Police Officer, and Road Patrol Deputy.

After retiring from the New York State Police, McCormack served as the Vice-President of security at del Lago Resort & Casino. In this role, he was responsible for the safety and security of the casino and resort. He managed a team of security officers, supervisors, and managers and developed comprehensive security policies and procedures at the site.

Outside of his professional career, McCormack is a longtime Assistant Chief of the C.J. Folger Hook and Ladder Fire Company. For over four decades, he has been involved in training and directing volunteer firefighters in emergency response procedures. One of McCormack’s key strengths is his commitment to communication and collaboration. He firmly believes that open and transparent communication is essential in maintaining the trust and confidence of the citizens he serves.

The event will be live-streamed via the city’s YouTube page @cityofgenevany

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