Citing the end of his five-year commitment and a desire to spend more time with family, Oakdale Police Chief Marty West gave official notice Wednesday, Aug. 30 to the city that he was saying goodbye to the department.
West came to Oakdale from Fresno where he worked as a captain before landing the chief position here in 2007.
West was born and raised in Fresno, and was hired by the Fresno Police Department in 1974. He has worked as a patrol officer, field training officer, and a night shift detective. In 1980, West was promoted to the rank of sergeant and worked as a field supervisor, and later as an Internal Affairs Investigator.
His tenure with the Oakdale department has not been without strife as budget constraints, employee tension and labor disputes made for a rocky relationship at times but West said he is pleased with his performance as chief and is ready to move on.
“My five-year commitment is up in February and that’s what I agreed to,” West said. “There have been some changes in my personal life, my wife retired, my oldest daughter is in Sacramento with a new baby and my youngest daughter is going to school in San Francisco…I’m to the point in my life where I want more freedom and that’s just not possible with the schedule I’m keeping right now.”
West maintained a residence in Fresno while staying in Oakdale and while he said he enjoyed the community, he’s ready to do different things.
“In November, I’ll have 37 years in law enforcement and it’s just time to do something new. My friends are all retired and it’s time. Being chief is very demanding with long hours and I want to fish,” West said.
West said he informed city council members of his intentions so this is not a blindside. He’s not moving onto another job aside from that of a family man.
“This is my last law enforcement job. Someone told me there’s more to life than law enforcement. I’m looking forward to spending more time with my family and my new grandkids,” he said.
West said he’s not making a hasty exit and that he’ll likely be around until mid March.
“I’m willing to help and I’m flexible,” he said of the city’s search for a new chief. “I’ve spent too much of my time here and given of myself to just walk away and say ‘See ya!’,” West said. “I’ll help out as much as I can.”
West said it was too early to tell if the city planned to hire internally or hire a head-hunting company to search out suitable candidates. A committee to select the new chief has already been formed and the search will likely begin soon.