Bronson announces new Anchorage police chief

A man poses for a photo in uniform with a flag behind him.
Deputy Chief Michael Kerle. (Anchorage Police Department photo)

Anchorage Mayor Dave Bronson has named a new police chief who will take over the job from Ken McCoy in February.

Deputy Chief Michael Kerle will be the city’s new police chief, effective Feb. 2., Bronson announced Tuesday night at an Assembly meeting. Kerle’s promotion is subject to Assembly approval. 

Kerle has been with the department for 25 years, starting in 1996. He was promoted to deputy chief in 2020. 

Bronson’s announcement Tuesday follows McCoy’s abrupt retirement statement last week. His last day is Feb. 1, less than a year after he was named police chief. In the community-wide statement, McCoy said his decision came after “much reflection and thoughtful consideration,” but he has not provided a specific reason for retiring.

McCoy has been with the police department for 27 years. He became acting police chief in April under acting Mayor Austin Quinn-Davidson. In June, Bronson appointed him as police chief and he was confirmed by the Assembly in July.

RELATED: Anchorage Police Chief Ken McCoy says he’ll retire in February

Wesley Early covers Anchorage life and city politics for Alaska Public Media. Reach him at and follow him on X at @wesley_early. Read more about Wesley here.

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