PROVO — Just two years after being named Provo's police chief, Rick Gregory announced Wednesday he is resigning to move to Ohio.
"This is a family first decision," Gregory wrote in an email to his staff Wednesday morning.
Gregory has been in law enforcement for 32 years and has worked with several agencies, including the Florida Highway Patrol. He also served as the public safety director in New Castle County, Del.
In 2011, Gregory was named as Provo's police chief amid an agency audit prompted by a series of cases involving officer misconduct and complaints about the integrity of the department.
In announcing his departure, Gregory said his short time with Provo has been the most rewarding of his law enforcement career.
"I leave Provo with mixed emotions — sad to leave a career in a place that offers so many challenges, opportunities and where we have enjoyed many accomplishments, to excitement about making Ohio our permanent home and the new opportunities there," he wrote. "The positive changes in our department and our many, many accomplishments are a direct result of the great people we have working here. I know that the department will continue to strive for excellence."
Provo Mayor John Curtis released a statement Wednesday, praising Gregory's accomplishments.
"His influence and ability to unite our police department has been measurable," Curtis said. "Since arriving, we’ve seen a significant decrease in crime due to the chief’s passion for community-oriented policing and proactive police work. I’m confident that the momentum we’ve felt and vision we’ve seen will continue. That really is one of the measures of a true leader."
Gregory's wife is starting a new job in Ohio, and the departing chief said a move there would also put them closer to their children.
No official resignation date was announced Wednesday, but city officials expect Gregory to stay in Provo until the end of July. His move also marks the end of his public service in law enforcement.
City spokesman Corey Norman said it was his understanding that Gregory would continue in the private sector, possibly as a private investigator.
An interim chief will be named at a later date.