A HISTORY MAKING POLICE CHIEF WHO HAS REDUCED CRIME AND HOMELESSNESS THROUGH COMMUNITY POLICING.
Over a 33 year career, City of Marina Police Chief Tina Nieto has been called on time and again to utilize her law enforcement management skills to improve department morale, increase recruitment, implement fiscal discipline, lower crime and recidivism rates, develop community relationships, and work with the local legislature to ensure adequate funding for her departments.
Tina proudly serves as Police Chief for the City of Marina in Monterey County. Every year Tina has been Chief, Marina has seen a reduction in violent and property crime. As Chief, Tina turned around a department that had been struggling with recruitment by improving department culture, increasing transparency and accountability with the public, and bringing the department up to full staffing.
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Tina began her career at the Los Angeles Police Department, where, after graduating first in her class in academics from the academy, she rose to become the first Latina police captain in the department’s 139 year history. In that role, she oversaw hundreds of officers serving hundreds of thousands of residents.
Tina has always put community policing at the heart of everything she does. That means a deep involvement in local neighborhoods, listening to the community, and working closely with neighbors to create a community that’s safer for everyone.
Tina helped reduce crime by record levels in all four areas of Los Angeles where she served in leadership positions. She also received a leadership award from the LAPD for her work on a number of innovative programs that steered people from homelessness to housing, work that became a national model.
Tina currently serves as President of Monterey County Chiefs Law Executive Association, a group of federal, state, and local law enforcement leaders. In 2021, Governor Newsom appointed Tina to the State POST Commission, which is responsible for setting minimum selection and training standards for California law enforcement. She’s also Executive Director of Marina Police Activities League (PAL), which helps oversee a local youth crime prevention program.
WITH A BROADER UNDERSTANDING OF LAW ENFORCEMENT AND ITS CHALLENGES FROM MULTIPLE PERSPECTIVES, TINA NIETO HAS WHAT IT TAKES TO BRING US TOGETHER.
Tina comes from a large, working class, Mexican family. She worked three jobs to put herself through school and was the first in her family to graduate college. She has vivid memories of how, when she was a child, her dad regularly got pulled over by police because they thought he looked like he didn’t belong in the neighborhood. She also fondly remembers the opportunities law enforcement provided her family. When she was young, her grandpa made his living fixing police radios for the LAPD. He was so proud when Tina became a police officer.
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Tina spent over a decade in the Army, where she reached the rank of captain, and served as commander of a military port security company (one of only three in the whole Army), and a member of the Nuclear Weapons Logistic Element, which involved coordinating movement of nuclear weapons and required a top secret clearance.
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Tina has seen the inside of both the military and law enforcement from a unique perspective. When she was at the LAPD, she heard stories about some cops who wouldn’t respond to a call for emergency backup from other officers if they knew they were gay. To fight this stigma, Tina helped form Pride Behind the Badge, the first group of its kind in the LAPD. She later received numerous awards for her work advancing the status of women and LGBTQ people in public safety.
Today she also serves as a Monterey County Restorative Justice Commissioner, where she helps oversee local restorative justice programs. And she has served as a mentor for members of the Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association. She was also a president of the organization in the past.
BRINGING LEADERSHIP, TRUST, ACCOUNTABILITY AND UPHOLDING THE HIGHEST ETHICAL STANDARDS.
Tina served as a police auditor and fraud examiner at the LAPD, where she led her team to prevent fraud, corruption, and abuse. And she helped oversee the team that reformed LAPD in the wake of the Rodney King case through community building and community policing and that moved LAPD into compliance with the judicial consent decree it was under for previous corruption and civil rights abuse.
Tina has more than 20 years of teaching experience at the LAPD Academy and the West Point Leadership Program. And she’s served as part of an elite team of leadership trainers at the California Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) Supervisory Leadership Institute Program, where she has trained law enforcement officials on leadership and ethical decision making.
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