Merseyside Police announce first female Chief Constable

Jane Kennedy and Serena Kennedy

SERENA Kennedy will be Merseyside Police’s first female Chief Constable after her selection by the Police Commissioner was confirmed by the region’s Police and Crime Panel today.

Jane Kennedy announced on International Women’s Day that Merseyside Police’s Deputy Chief Constable Serena Kennedy was her preferred choice to take over the top role at the Force when the current Chief Constable, Andy Cooke QPM, leaves in April.

The Commissioner’s decision was referred to the Police and Crime Panel, who considered the appointment at a virtual confirmation hearing. The hearing, which was live-streamed to enable members of the public to observe, gave Panel members the opportunity to review the recruitment and selection process, assess the supporting documents and interview DCC Kennedy.

The Panel, which is made up of elected and independent members from across Merseyside, had the power to either ratify or veto the Commissioner’s proposed candidate. Members were satisfied that DCC Kennedy was the right person to take over the job when Andy Cooke leaves the Force to join Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services.

Commenting on the Panel’s endorsement, Jane said: “I am very pleased that the Panel has approved my selection of Serena to be the next Chief Constable of Merseyside Police.

“Serena has exceptional experience of policing, is very well respected in the policing community and already holds a number of significant national roles. She has shown the vision, ethics and leadership qualities needed to ensure that Merseyside Police remains the best performing urban force in the country, ensuring it will continue to deliver the high quality of policing that people here on Merseyside expect and deserve.”

Deputy Chief Constable Serena Kennedy, said: “I will be incredibly proud to lead Merseyside Police and I’m looking forward to enhancing our Community First approach to policing, which has the public firmly at the heart of everything we do.”