EAST ORANGE — Two East Orange police captains made history by scoring first and second on the state deputy chief exam and by becoming the first Hispanic deputy chief in the city and the youngest to hold that rank.
Capt. Raymond Garcia, a 21-year veteran, and Capt. Kasim Gilyard, a 19-year veteran, were promoted to deputy chief on Nov. 20. The new deputy chiefs were officially sworn in by City Clerk Cynthia Brown during a ceremony held in East Orange City Council Chambers.
Garcia, who scored number two on the state test, originally hails from the Province of Santiago Rodríguez in the Dominican Republic. He moved to the United States in 1991 and joined EOPD in 2002.
Garcia has held various assignments as a member of the Street Crimes Assertion Team, Violent Crimes Task Force, Narcotics Unit, Background Investigation Unit, Enhanced Community Safety Team, Criminal Investigations Bureau and Patrol Division.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural sciences from Loyola College in the Province of Dajabon. In his new role, he will be in charge of the Investigations Unit.
Gilyard scored number one on the state test and at the age of 43 has become the youngest officer named deputy chief. He joined EOPD in 2004 and is the recipient of numerous awards and citations for bravery and investigative excellence from the East Orange Police Department, the Policemen’s Benevolent Association and the Fraternal Order of Police Association.
Gilyard formerly served in the Office of the Chief of Police, Professional Standards Unit, Criminal Investigations Bureau, Enhanced Community Safety Team and Patrol Division. Gilyard attended Essex County Community College and is a graduate of John H. Stamler Police Academy in Union. He will oversee EOPD Operations.
“Both of these men have demonstrated their effectiveness as leaders, and under their guidance, I have no doubt that our department will continue to flourish as a national model for community policing, professional standards and preventing crime,” said Mayor Ted R. Green. “The growth of our city has been remarkable over the past few years and I believe prioritizing public safety has been the driving force. These dedicated officers have been a huge part of our city’s progress and these well-deserved promotions are a reflection of the skills, compassion, courage, integrity and commitment they both have shown throughout their careers.”
Director of Public Safety Maurice Boyd echoed Green’s sentiments, adding that it is important to acknowledge not just the accomplishment of reaching this significant milestone, but also to acknowledge the collective effort and sacrifices made by loved ones.
“Behind every successful officer stands a network of support, providing encouragement during challenging times and celebrating their victories,” Boyd said. “As we look to the future, we are confident that our new deputy chiefs will continue to lead with distinction. Their tenure as deputy chief will be marked by innovation, compassion and tireless commitment to the safety and well-being of our community.”
Council Chair Christopher Awe said the deputy chiefs exemplify the best traits for our community.
“Leadership is not about authority. It is about influence. Both deputy chiefs possess an amazing understanding of the community they serve, and a willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty,” Awe said. “We deeply appreciate their service to the City of East Orange and we will support them with the resources and tools they need to protect the people of our community.”
Police Chief Phyllis L. Bindi, who has worked closely with both men over the years, said she is tremendously proud of Garcia and Gilyard.
“These two men are the epitome of team players. Service runs deep in their souls,” Bindi said. “They lead by resounding example and I take pride in watching others follow. They have exceeded their oath to serve and protect and in these new roles, I know that they will continue to move this great community forward.”