Mercer Island’s top cop now also leads the board of the state law-enforcement’s top professional association.
Chief Ed Holmes was appointed President of the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC) executive board on April 2. Former King County Sheriff Sue Rahr, to accept leadership of the state’s police academy, also relinquished her position as head of the non-profit association. Holmes will serve a one-year term as president beginning next month.
The non-profit association, founded in 1963, represents sheriffs, police chiefs, the Washington State Patrol, the Washington Department of Corrections, tribal and several federal agencies and is frequently consulted on policy issues concerning law enforcement in Olympia.
WASPC's stated purpose is to "function is to provide specific materials and services to all law enforcement agencies in the state, members and non-members alike." Specifically, the association manages several state grants for intiatives such as traffic safety improvements or sex offender verification, as well as the professional accreditation process for all law enforcement agencies in the state.
Last year, the association awarded $4.8 million in sex offender verification programs in the state.
“It brings prestige, and I would think, some amount of influence in the state,” said Mercer Island City Manager Rich Conrad of Holmes’ appointment.
Holmes was elected as one of three police chiefs to the WASPC executive board in 2008 and was elected President-elect by his peers in 2011. Rules dictate that the position of president of the board traditionally is rotated annually between a police chief and a sheriff.
According to his biography published on the WASPC website, Chief Holmes began his career in law enforcement in 1994 with the MIPD as a patrol officer and worked his way up to Chief in 2006. Prior to working for Mercer Island, he worked as a Juvenile Rehabilitation Counselor for incarcerated youth at Echo Glen Children's Center. He spent his time working with the youth in the Sex Offender Unit as well as the Maximum Security Unit.
Chief Holmes is also an active member of the club where he serves on a variety of committees.