City Manager Jim Couch has named Police Chief M. T. Berry Assistant City Manager.
Chief Berry will serve in a dual capacity, continuing as Chief of Police while taking on additional responsibilities overseeing Fire, Police and other departments. Couch will name a new Police Chief at a future date.
Berry became Police Chief in 1998, after serving more than 25 years in the department as both a civilian employee and uniformed police officer. He joined the department in 1970 as a civilian Community Service Officer, and became a sworn police officer the following year.
As Police Chief, Berry has been responsible for the planning, organizing and directing of all police services for the City – almost 1300 employees and a budget of $119.6 million.
Previous to being Police Chief, Berry served as Deputy Chief of the Investigations Bureau, the Support Services Bureau and the Operations Bureau before being named Chief.
Berry served as Interim Police Chief from April, 1991 through October 1991.
Berry is a member and Past President of the Oklahoma Chapter of FBI National Academy Associates. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Last Frontier Council of the Boy Scouts of America and the American Red Cross of Central Oklahoma.
Berry is also on the Advisory Board of Leadership Oklahoma City, the Steering Committee of YMCA Achievers, and is a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Major Cities Chief’s Association, the National Executive Institute Alumni Association and the National Organization of Blacks in Law Enforcement.
He is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Metro Alliance
for Safer Cities and the Oklahoma Mental Health Association.
Berry has an Associate of Science Degree in Police Science from Oklahoma State University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Central Oklahoma.
He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, the National Emergency Management Institute, the Senior Management Institute for Police and the National Executive Institute.
"On the day I was sworn in as City Manager, I said public service is a noble profession and I named some individuals who I respected for their example," Couch said.
"One of the employees I singled out was M.T. Berry. I said at that time how much I admired him for his consistent integrity. Since that day I have had the opportunity to work directly with Chief Berry and my belief in his integrity has only grown stronger."
Under Oklahoma City's council/manager government, the City Manager hires all department heads with the exception of the City Attorney, City Auditor and Municipal Judges. Berry joins Assistant City Managers Catherine O'Connor and Jim Thompson. He replaces JoeVan Bullard, who retired from City service to become Director of the Oklahoma City Urban Renewal Authority.