After a nationwide search that attracted 69 applicants, the city of Brookhaven found its new deputy police chief from within its own department.

Police Chief Gary Yandura watches as Brandon Gurley’s wife, Alison Gurley, pins him as part of the ceremony promoting him to deputy chief during the March 26 City Council meeting. With them are their children, Alyssa Gurley and Austin Gurley. Mayor John Ernst and the City Council gave Gurley a standing ovation. (Dyana Bagby)

Chief Gary Yandura named Brandon Gurley as the new deputy chief at the City Council’s March 26 meeting. The promotion was effective immediately.

Yandura said Gurley was the first officer he called to help him start up Brookhaven’s police department shortly after the city incorporated six years ago.

Hired as a lieutenant, Gurley was promoted to major in 2014. He has been the manager of the Uniform Patrol Divisions and the public information officer.

The new pay ranges for major is a minimum of $70,471 and maximum of $121,500. The pay range for deputy chief is a minimum of $79,628 and maximum of $136,000.

The new pay ranges for officers, sergeants and lieutenants approved in January bumped the minimum salary up by about 13 percent and the maximum by about 6 percent. That means the lowest pay for a rookie officer jumped from $42,406 to $48,500.

The city hired the professional firm of Morris B. McDaniel to conduct a leadership assessment after a nationwide search was concluded. Four finalists were then vetted by a citizen panel of residents and subject matter experts, including:

  • Assistant Chief Debbie Burnett of the Rome Police Department
  • Chief John King of the Doraville Police Department
  • Kim Gokce, founder of the Cross Keys Foundation
  • LaShawn McMillan, principal of Ashford Park Elementary School

Former Deputy Chief Juan Grullon resigned in November following a sexual harassment allegation made by a fellow officer, which Grullon denied.

Dyana Bagby is a staff writer for Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta Intown.