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What's the NYPD commissioner salary as Keechant Sewell takes up role?

Yasmine Leung December 16, 2021
What's the NYPD commissioner salary as Keechant Sewell takes up role?
Photo by David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

The New York Police Department (NYPD) has made a historic hire after naming Keechant Sewell as the city’s first female commissioner. People are curious to know the salary and other details about the person in control of the largest police force in the US.

Keechant Sewell is making headlines after she was appointed NYPD commissioner, as announced on Tuesday, 14 December 2021.

Mayor-elect Eric Adams selected the Nassau County chief of detectives as the Big Apple’s top officer because she is a “proven crime fighter with the experience and emotional intelligence to deliver both the safety New Yorkers need and the justice they deserve”.

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Severance | Official Teaser | Apple TV+

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What’s the salary of an NYPD commissioner?

According to GovSalaries, current NYPD commissioner Dermot F Shea earned $243,171 in 2020. Meanwhile, Comparably states the New York City average for a police commissioner is $196,998, which is 29% higher than the US average of $153,058.

It makes sense, the NY police force totals about 36,000 members.

From this, we expect Sewell to earn at least $200,000.

What does a commissioner do?

Appointed by the mayor, the city’s entire police department is headed by the police commissioner.

The official NYPD website states their function is to “carry out the department’s critical mission: ensuring a safe, secure environment and enhancing the quality of life for all New Yorkers”.

They’re responsible for the force’s day-to-day operations, and appoint their subordinate officers and chief of department.

The first deputy commissioner, deputy commissioners, chief of department (highest ranking uniformed member of the service), and bureau chiefs all report to the commissioner.

Duties of the commissioner include managing the annual budget, so Sewell will be in charge of Fiscal 2022’s proposed expense budget of $5.44 billion.

What’s Sewell’s background?

Sewell was born 2 April 1972 in Queens, New York, making her 49 years old.

Growing up, she had a close relationship with retired NYPD detective John Wesley Pierce, who she called ‘Pop Pop’, while her father was a US marine.

Her 25-year career began when she entered the police force in October 1997 as part of Nassau County Police Department. She rose through the ranks to become commanding officer of the 7th Precinct, heading the department’s bureau of major cases, and eventually served as the the county’s chief hostage negotiator.

In September 2020, the 49-year-old was promoted to chief of detectives, commanding a team of 350 – a huge difference to her upcoming staff of 36,000.

Shea has tweeted about his successor, welcoming her to the role.

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Yasmine is a third-year Anthropology and Media student at Goldsmiths University with a new obsession with League of Legends, despite being really bad. She's always on social media keeping on top of the latest news and trends and is HITC’s expert in Korean pop culture. She also loves music, TV and fashion - her favourite things to write about.