The Victorian Government today announced the selection of a new Chief Commissioner of Victoria Police, with current Deputy Commissioner Shane Patton to step into the top job on 27 June.
Deputy Commissioner Patton will take over from Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton AM, whose five-year term comes to an end later this month.
With more than 40 years’ experience across the full spectrum of policing, Shane Patton has been chosen as the best person to become the next Chief Commissioner and deliver a modern, agile and high-visibility police force that is engaged with the community and keeps Victorians safe.
His appointment follows an extensive recruitment process that included a search of both local and key international markets.
Starting as a police cadet in 1978, Deputy Commissioner Patton has had an impressive and varied career, rising through the ranks to take on crucial roles in the Victoria Police Executive Command, including Deputy Commissioner – Specialist Operations and his current role as Deputy Commissioner – Regional Operations.
In those roles he has directed regional operations across the state, including through the public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic and recent bushfires, set up Victoria Police’s Counter Terrorism Command, and taken significant actions to address serious and organised crime.
Since his appointment in 2015, Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton AM has made an extraordinary contribution to Victoria Police, overseeing the single biggest expansion and modernisation of the force in its 167-year history and raising the priority on mental health within the force.
His leadership of the organisation has been exceptional, especially through the recent tragic loss of four Victoria Police members on the Eastern Freeway, the 2019/20 Victorian bushfires and during the coronavirus pandemic.
Under the Victoria Police Act, the Chief Commissioner is appointed by the Governor in Council for a five year-term.
As stated by Premier Daniel Andrews
“Shane Patton is a strong leader with more than four decades experience in policing and is the best person to lead Victoria Police over the next term.”
“I thank Graham Ashton for his exceptional service to Victoria over the past five years – he should be enormously proud of all he has achieved for the force and for the Victorian community.”
As stated by Minister for Police and Emergency Services Lisa Neville
“Shane Patton has enormous experience within the Victoria Police family and is undoubtedly the right person to lead the force through another important period.”
“I will have much more to say about Graham at the appropriate time – but he leaves an enormous legacy at Victoria Police and I thank him for his incredible leadership over the last five years.”