Mountain View Police Chief Chris Hsiung will retire in February, after 28 years with the Mountain View Police Department, the city announced in a statement Monday. Hsiung has served as police chief for the last two years, and is the city's 11th police chief.
The day after Hsiung's announcement, San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus announced that Hsiung will be joining the department as San Mateo County's new undersheriff.
In his nearly three decades with the Mountain View Police Department, Hsiung has served in every division within the organization, the Dec. 19 statement said, including investigative and tactical.
Becoming a police officer with the department “was my first full time job,” Hsiung told the Voice in an interview. “I came in very young, I think I was 21 or 22, and I kind of grew up within the department and with the community. It’s an absolute chapter of my life that I’m grateful and honored to be a part of.”
During his tenure as police chief, Hsiung formed two ad-hoc advisory councils, the Latino Community Advisory Council and the Faith-Based Leadership Council, the statement said.
"Under his leadership, the department embarked on a pilot program, known as the Behavioral Science Unit, to meet the mental health and social service needs of community members before a mental health crisis makes it necessary for police interaction," the city's statement said.
Hsiung told the Voice that this type of preventative approach to policing is something he hopes will continue to grow within the department.
“If we can identify who we contact the most, generally with the undertone of needing social and mental health resources, (it’s best) if we can contact them in advance of a crisis event where they’re not stable – because we all know that’s the highest risk environment, when officers have to contact someone in that situation,” he said.
Hsiung also serves as a co-chair on the International Association of Chiefs of Police Human & Civil Rights Committee, as well as a board member on the Global Advisory Council for the Crisis Ready Institute. He's a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Senior Executives in State and Local Government program and has a master’s degree in eBusiness Management from Notre Dame de Namur.
Hsiung expressed his gratitude toward City Manager Kimbra McCarthy for the opportunity to serve.
“Chief Hsiung has helped shape what the Mountain View Police Department is today by improving transparency and building stronger relations with our residents,” said McCarthy in a statement. “Over his decades-long career with the Mountain View Police Department, Chief Hsiung has always made the safety and wellbeing of our community his highest priority."
Looking forward to his next chapter, Hsiung said he’s “always been a lifelong learner.”
“No matter what life throws my way, I think it’s just that opportunity to learn something new,” he said.
Former Mountain View Police Chief Max Bosel will temporarily return as interim chief while the next steps are determined for filling department's top leadership position, the city said. Chief Bosel was originally appointed as Mountain View’s police chief in August 2014 and retired in December 2020.
Hsiung's official retirement date is slated for Feb. 10.