Shawnee names Sam Larson as new police chief

Sam Larson, the city of Shawnee's new chief of police. Larson said all police officers are trained in de-escalation.

The city of Shawnee has announced the appointment of Sam Larson as Shawnee’s new chief of police. Larson most recently served as the deputy chief of police.

The city had conducted a nationwide search following the retirement announcement of Police Chief Rob Moser, who served nearly 30 years in the Shawnee Police Department. Larson will begin his service as police chief Feb. 24.

“Sam is well prepared to take the reins of the police department,” said City Manager Nolan Sunderman, who made the announcement. “He has a passion for local government and over 21 years of law enforcement experience. Sam has been a successful, engaged leader for Shawnee, not only in the department, but also in the community. I look forward to working with Sam in his new role as a key member of the city’s leadership team.”

Sam Larson, the city of Shawnee’s new chief of police

Larson joined the Shawnee Police Department in 1999 and has served as a patrol officer, traffic safety officer, special tactics and response team officer, and detective. In 2005, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant, after which he served in patrol, general assignment investigations, and in dispatch/technical services. He was later promoted to captain, and then major, and finally, in 2019, he was named deputy police chief.

“It is an honor to serve the city and I’m proud to have the opportunity to lead such a talented and dedicated Department,” Larson said. “Chief Moser has brought this department forward, and I will strive to build on the progress we have made under his leadership. During my tenure, the department will continue to strive for the highest standards of accountability, professionalism, effectiveness, all while serving our community with purpose and care.”

A lifelong Shawnee resident, Larson graduated from Washburn University with an undergraduate degree in criminal justice and earned a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Kansas. He is a 2019 graduate of the 277th Session of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia. He and his wife, Nichi, have two daughters, Madison and Loren.