Calling it an "exciting evening," Mayor Joseph Tempesta formally swore in three new probationary police officers, including West Caldwell's first female officer, Kristin Maier, at Tuesday night's Council meeting.
In addition to Maier, Raymond Foster and Brett Keepers were appointed as probationary police officers.
As family and friends filled the Council chambers, both Tempesta and Councilman Richard Otterbein, chairperson of the Public Safety Committee, outlined the selection process, which began with 20 candidates chosen for interviews with Police Captain Gerard Paris and other members of the police department.
After the candidates were narrowed down to the three new officers, each underwent psychological testing and a background investigation.
Two of the three officers, Maier and Foster, will now begin field training, while the third candidate, Brett Keepers, will begin training at the police academy.
Before the three police officers were sworn in by Tempesta, Police Chief Michael Bramhall outlined their accomplishments and credentials.
After graduating from Woodbridge High School and Montclair State University, Maier served approximately 5 years with the Montclair State University Police Department, where she served as a dispatcher, patrol officer and later a detective. In addition to her college degree, Maier also graduated from the Essex County Police Academy.
Foster received an Associate's Degree in Criminal Justice from Bergen Community College after graduating from Clifton High School. In October 2009, Foster put himself through the Passaic County Police Academy, Class 09-37, as an Alternate Route candidate.
During his training at the police academy, Foster received the Markmanship award during firearms qualification.
Before becoming a police officer, Foster worked at California Pizza Kitchen in Wayne, ending his career in the restaurant business a a Shift Leader and Manager.
Brett Albert Keepers
An Eagle Scout and volunteer fireman in Cedar Grove, Keepers first began work with the WCPD as a dispatcher in 2007. Keepers received several letters of commendation for excellent performance during adverse situations while serving as a dispatcher.
After graduating Cedar Grove High School in 2004, Keepers attended Morris County College and studied in the Fire Science program.
In addition to this service as a fireman and an Eagle Scout, Keepers also joined the Cedar Grove Ambulance and Rescue Squad when he was 16.
Keepers will now begin enrollment at the police academy before beginning his field training.