CAMP VERDE - Camp Verde Town Manger Russ Martin announced on Thursday the hiring of Nancy Gardner as Camp Verde's new town marshal.
Gardner, a lieutenant and division commander with the Avondale Police Department, was chosen from among six finalist and approximately 80 applicants.
"She has what I believe to be the skill set we were looking for. In particular she brings a strong background in community involvement as well as business administration. I think she is just what
Camp Verde was looking for, and Camp Verde is just what she was looking for," Martin said.
Gardner echoed Martin's comments in an interview on Friday, saying she is looking forward to all Camp Verde has to offer.
"My husband and I are both from a small town and moved to Mesa in 1986 for our careers. We have now raised our three daughters and its time to return to our roots.
"I feel Camp Verde is a perfect fit. It has the small-town atmosphere and the friendly people we have known all our lives and we are looking forward to becoming a part of the community," Gardner said.
Martin said one of the deciding factors in her selection was her desire to "be here."
"Raised in Minot, N.D., her goal was to come to a smaller town. She wants to buy a place here and become part of the community. I would say that longevity played a big role in my decision," he said.
Gardner has a bachelor's degree in business management from the University of Phoenix and a master's in human relations from Northern Arizona University.
She has served as a lieutenant and division commander in Avondale for the last four years and previously as an officer, detective, sergeant and lieutenant for the Gilbert Police Department from 1991 to 2007.
Among her accomplishments at the Avondale Police Department was the creation of the community's first SWAT Team, their "Partners 4 Pets," program and the expansion of their community outreach program.
During her tenure in Gilbert she ran the department's criminal investigations bureau, helped develop the department's training and qualification firing range and served as one of the community's first SWAT Team members, and eventually, the team's commander.
She was also the recipient of numerous awards while with the Gilbert P.D., including a Distinguished Service Award, Supervisor of the Year and a Law Enforcement Commendation Medal.
Gardner says she will spend the next few weeks familiarizing herself with the Marshal's Office before starting full time the first week of March.