Robert Kempf was surrounded by family and active officers and firefighters when he was sworn in as Cherry Hill’s new chief of police during a Jan. 25 council meeting.
Kempf follows William “Bud” Monaghan, who became police chief in 2013 and has retired after 26 years of service in the department. Larry Robb held the position temporarily.
Kempf is a Cherry Hill West graduate who has been with the police force for 22 years, according to the township’s Facebook post. His experience includes service as a detective in the cyber crime unit, Juris Doctor and master’s degrees in business administration from Rutgers University and roles as sergeant and lieutenant in the patrol division and detective sergeant on the investigative team.
Councilwoman Carole Roskoph recalled interviewing Kempf for the chief’s position.
“… The thing that impressed me the most is that we asked you, ‘What is the one thing you would have to do as chief of police in the Cherry Hill community?’” she recalled in addressing Kempf. “And you said … ‘We have to embrace the community in a blanket of empathy.’
“And in that moment, I knew we found the right person for this position.”
Mayor Susan Shin Angulo remarks reflected on Jan. 27, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, as well as the taking of hostages at a synagogue in Texas on Jan. 17, Martin Luther King Day. She and Councilwoman Michele Galkow thanked police for strengthening security around synagogues and other houses of worship in the aftermath of the hostage situation.
“In no uncertain time, township council and I condemn all acts of hate and anti-Semitism,” Shin Angulo said. “This shocking act of violence is further proof that there is more work for all of us to weed out the deep-rooted bigotry and hate.
“We must stand united to fight them in every neighborhood, in every community, across the country.
The mayor also acknowledged approval of a contract for renovations and rehabilitation of the historic Barclay Farmstead Museums and Outbuildings. Renovations include new stairs, brick repointing, replacing a portion of the plumbing and adding a new sump pump.
“This work is an important step in preserving our treasured site, so that the public will be able to enjoy it for generations to come,” she noted.
During board comments, Roskoph and Council President David Fleisher acknowledged $112,983.84 in funds the township received from various grants. Both noted that the funds will help offset the tax impact of township projects.
The council meeting can be viewed on the township Facebook page. The next session will be on Monday, Feb. 14, both in person at the municipal building and online through Zoom.