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Chief Jim Schaffer signing off as Snoqualmie's top cop
After 23 years with the Snoqualmie Police Department, Police Chief Jim Schaffer will retire this June.
Colleagues in city government say Schaffer’s impact on the city, heading a growing department during an era of great change, has been profound.
Following work at the FBI and the Issaquah Police Department, he became a Snoqualmie police officer in 1989 and was promoted to sergeant, captain, and then chief in 2003.
“Jim has played a significant role in humanizing police officers to children, particularly with the bike safety rodeo,” said Councilman Bob Jeans.
Schaffer helped establish the annual Tanner Jeans Memorial Bike Safety Rodeo – a partnership between the Snoqualmie Police Department and the Tanner Jeans Memorial Foundation. The rodeo teaches the fundamentals of bike safety to hundreds of children each year.
City Administrator Bob Larson praised Schaffer: “He is a strong partner - always open and helpful to others – particularly with his fellow department managers,” he said.
An active member of local organizations such as the Snoqualmie Valley Community Network, Snoqualmie Valley Chamber of Commerce, the Snoqualmie Valley Hospital Foundation and others, Schaeffer is an avid supporter of the Snoqualmie Railroad Days festival, at which he and his wife Lisa will serve as grand marshals of the parade this coming August.
“It’s been a privilege to serve the citizens of Snoqualmie over the past 23 years,” the outgoing chief said in a statement. “The opportunity to experience firsthand the dynamics of a city growing from 1,500 residents to 11,000 is one of those once in a lifetime events. The men and women of the Snoqualmie Police Department represent the best of what law enforcement stands for and it is an honor to have been counted among their ranks.”
Taking the reins as Police Chief on July 1 is Police Captain Steve McCulley. McCulley was raised in Monroe and has lived in North Bend since 1990. He served for 27 years with the Washington State Patrol, retiring as an Assistant Division Commander with the WSP Homeland Security Division.
Schaffer was a leader in the formation of the Coalition of Small Police Agencies and its Major Crimes Task Force. The coalition consists of 12 city police agencies, representing 15 cities in King County. By combining resources, it has been instrumental in increasing the level of specialized training and expertise for officers in small agencies.