Kenton W. Rainey named chief of police for UCPD

Calmetta Coleman
Director of Communications for Civic EngagementUniversity Communications

Veteran Police Chief Kenton W. Rainey has been named the new chief of police for the University of Chicago Police Department, effective July 1.

As chief, Rainey will oversee the approximately 100 members of the full-service, professionally accredited police department and serve as the department’s representative on campus and in the neighboring communities. Rainey also will direct the UCPD’s policing initiatives, develop innovative crime prevention strategies and implement effective community policing programs.

Rainey will report to Eric M. Heath, associate vice president for the University’s Department of Safety & Security.

“One of the many valuable areas of expertise Kenton brings to the University of Chicago is his involvement with creating innovative, community-based policing strategies,” said Heath. “Throughout his law enforcement career, Kenton has worked in diverse communities, where he built strong and positive relationships with community members and successfully implemented new policing programs, resulting in effective policing efforts.”

Most recently Rainey served as the chief of police for the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Police Department until his retirement from the role at the end of last year. Rainey also has served as chief of police for the Fairfield, Calif. Police Department and commander of the airport police for the San Antonio Police Department, in addition to leadership roles with several other law enforcement agencies in California and Ohio.  

"The University of Chicago is a world-class organization, and it is an honor and privilege for me to have been selected for this position,” said Rainey. “I’m excited to work with the members of the University’s police department, the University’s students, faculty and staff, and area community members so that together we can achieve our public safety mission.”

Rainey, who is originally from Chicago, is a graduate of California State University, Long Beach with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and the University of Phoenix with a master’s degree in organizational management.