Steve Bevens, who has decades of experience in law enforcement, was recently named police chief for Troutdale.
"I'm pretty excited. I've always loved Troutdale," Bevens said.
Bevens, 51, is a captain with the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, which provides law enforcement services to Troutdale.
Troutdale City Manager Ray Young said "we are thrilled to have Captain Bevens as our new police chief."
Bevens is no stranger to East Multnomah County. He was hired as a police officer for the city of Fairview in 1998 and transferred to Troutdale in 2000. He was promoted to sergeant in 2002 and became part of the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office when the Troutdale Police Department merged with MCSO in 2016.
Bevens was promoted to lieutenant in 2017 and captain in 2020.
His long time working in Troutdale and Fairview makes the new job a good fit for him and the community, Bevens said.
"I know the community very well. I know the city employees. I know the concerns the citizens have," he said.
"We've had a good run of excellent police chiefs," Young said, "but Steve brings a whole new element, since he spent 15 years as a Troutdale officer."
Young said "as a person, he's great to talk with and easy to get along with. And the citizens who interact with him will just love him and his ability to listen to their concerns."
Bevens plans weekly meetings with Young to keep current on city issues and events.
One of the things Bevens likes about Troutdale is that "the city wants to maintain that small town feel, the neighborly environment. People are proud of living in the city of Troutdale," he said. "My focus is on livability issues."
Relatively minor issues, like speeding or parking violations, can morph into bigger problems if not addressed quickly.
Young agrees with that focus.
"Luckily, we don't have much in the way of serious crime in Troutdale," Young said and praised Bevens for his experience with those livability issues.
Bevens also wants to make sure he and the other MCSO employees follow through with anyone who becomes the victim of a crime.
"That's very important to me," he said.
While in the Sheriff's office, Bevens has supervised school resource officers and started the Homeless Outreach Program and Engagement (HOPE) program. He also managed the river patrol and training divisions.
"The HOPE team was one of the most fun assignments," he said.
He acknowledges "the houseless community is huge" in East Multnomah County and serving that population is key. His ties to the HOPE team will help work with those citizens and maintain community livability.
He also enjoyed his time supervising the river patrol.
"The door was open. We welcomed the public in. We were mostly educating boaters on safety," he said.
Bevens called his time running the training department "a real eye opener" because he worked with corrections officers who have very different jobs from patrol and other officers.
"It was great to meet all of them and work with them," he said.
The father of a grown daughter, Bevens has been married for 24 years and lives in Vancouver, Wash. He attended Portland State University on a baseball scholarship.
Bevens replaces Captain Travis Gullberg, who has been reassigned by the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office.
Bevens wants to be on top of things and proactive in Troutdale.
"When a problem comes up, it's important to address it right away or it grows quickly," he said.
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