This past Tuesday, the Prince George’s County Council confirmed the appointments of H.P. “Hank” Stawinski, III as Chief of the Prince George’s County Police Department (PGPD) and Gevonia R. Whittington as Director of the Prince George’s County Office of Homeland Security. Following the County Council confirmation, Chief Stawinski and Director Whittington were sworn-in during a ceremony in the Office of the County Executive in Upper Marlboro, MD. To view this swearing-in ceremony click here.
“The Prince George’s County Council confirmed two incredible leaders to continue our public safety progress throughout the County,” said Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker, III. “I want to congratulate Hank Stawinski and Gevonia “Gee-Gee” Whittington on their new and critical leadership positions and look forward to being kept appraised through their counsel as well as their service to the citizens of this County. I also want to thank Chairman Derrick L. Davis and the Members of the Prince George’s County Council for their support of these appointees. Hank and Gee-Gee are County residents who also represent the next generation of County leaders who will continue to transform public safety in Prince George’s County.”
“The Council congratulates County Executive Baker on his two solid choices for public safety leadership before the Council,” said Prince George’s County Council Chair Derrick L. Davis. (D-District 6) “We are pleased to unanimously confirm the appointments of both Chief Hank Stawinski and Homeland Security Director Gevonia Whittington. Safe communities is a top priority and with these appointments, Prince Georgians are assured of grassroots, experienced, long-serving public safety leaders.”
Established originally in 1931, the Prince George’s County Police Department serves approximately 900,000 citizens throughout the County. The Department answers over 500,000 calls for service per year and has an authorized strength of over 2,000 officers and 300 civilians. Over the past five years, PGPD has reduced crime over 40 percent and violent crime over 30 percent while trailblazing innovations in community policing, communications and the use of data to curb negative crime trends.
“At the end your life, you add it all up and it all comes down to a few moments and this is one of them for me,” said PGPD Chief Hank Stawinski. “The most fundamental reason why I would like to continue my tenure and lead what I refer to as the family business in the future is sitting right here (my daughter) – ensuring her safety and the safety of all the children in Prince George’s County into the future.”
In 2003 Prince George’s County Government established the Office of Homeland Security to plan and coordinate the County’s domestic preparedness and emergency response efforts. The Prince George’s County Office of Homeland Security is comprised of three functions, combined to ensure the safety and security of the citizens and residents of this County. Homeland Security is comprised of an administrative office and two operational divisions, the Office of Emergency Management and the Office of Public Safety Communication. Furthermore, over recent years Prince George’s County has grown its homeland security apparatus by building a more robust Office of Emergency Management as well as investing in public safety infrastructure with the opening of a new 9-1-1 dispatch center in 2010 and Public Safety Complex in 2015.
“I want to again thank Mr. Baker for such an awesome opportunity,” said Prince George’s County Office of Homeland Security Director Gevonia Whittington. “I appreciate that he has chosen me and has the faith that I will lead the Office of Homeland Security to new heights. Homeland Security is such a critical component in the county and in the country. I look forward to working with the men and women of the Office of Homeland Security, while striving to keep our community safe. I will seek to earn this position every day.”
Bios for both are in this news release.