UofL taps Cleveland State’s Gary Lewis as new chief of police

    Gary Lewis will join the UofL force Aug. 1.
    Gary Lewis will join the UofL force Aug. 1.

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. – A veteran police chief with extensive experience in university and community policing will serve as the next chief of the University of Louisville Police Department.

    Gary Lewis, executive director of campus safety and chief of police at Cleveland State University, will join the UofL force Aug. 1. He will follow interim chief Kenny Brown, who has served in that role since the May 2017 retirement of Wayne Hall. Brown will return to his position as assistant chief.

    Head of Cleveland State’s operation since 2015, Lewis will bring more than 25 years’ experience in law enforcement and public relations to the position. Prior positions include stints as operations and post commander with the Ohio State Highway Patrol in Columbus and Lancaster. In Columbus, he created Ohio’s first metropolitan patrol post to establish a presence within urban communities. He also served as senior director, media and public relations for The Ohio State University from 2013 to 2015.

    Lewis earned a bachelor of science in public safety degree from Franklin University in Columbus and a master of science in criminal justice administration from Michigan State University. He completed Harvard University’s Crisis Leadership in Higher Education program in 2017 and the FBI National Academy’s Executive Management/Leadership Course in 2003.

    Lewis is a member of several professional organizations, including the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives.

    “I look forward to working with the experienced, professional law enforcement officers at the University of Louisville,” Lewis said. “I hope to bring new energy and new ideas to an already outstanding organization. Together, we will work with students, faculty and staff on all our campuses, combining leading-edge techniques with strong experience in community policing to ensure the safest campus for the university community.”



    John Drees is a 35-year veteran in the Office of Communications and Marketing. As vice president, communications and marketing, he works closely with the president, provost and other senior administrators, oversees the Office of Communications and Marketing, including media relations, marketing and brand, broadcast, social media, internal communication, crisis communication, visitor services and special events and activities. A former sports editor for the Voice Newspapers, he was a regular contributor to a variety of publications, including the Kentucky Sports Report and the Courier-Journal. A poor but enthusiastic golfer, he is an avid Cardinal sports fan. He also loves the Detroit Lions, so pity him.