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Morton Grove police chief retiring in April

Morton Grove 11/18/2010 Mourners attending Interment services for former Morton Grove Mayor Dan Scanlon, who died Thursday, Nov. 11. Police Chief Mark Erickson  remembers Mayor Scanlon. | Richard Bajjalieh~Sun-Times Media

Morton Grove 11/18/2010 Mourners attending Interment services for former Morton Grove Mayor Dan Scanlon, who died Thursday, Nov. 11. Police Chief Mark Erickson remembers Mayor Scanlon. | Richard Bajjalieh~Sun-Times Media

Police Chief Mark Erickson has decided to retire in April, just weeks after his 30-year anniversary with Morton Grove.

Erickson was hired as a patrolman in March 1984 and served in nearly every position within the department before being appointed chief of police in September 2009.

“It’s a lot of things. I’m 55 years old and 30 years is the max-out on the pension,” Erickson said. “It’s a young man’s job. The police department is in great shape, so I look forward to a smooth transition.”

Police and fire chiefs are typically promoted from within after candidates have acquired years of inside experience, which would leave deputy chiefs Norm Stromberg and Brian Fennelly as prime candidates.

“That’s the old days,” Erickson said. “I remember eight years ago when I was first appointed deputy chief we got chief from Chicago. He was here for four years and then retired. It was a first at the time.”

Though he didn’t feel comfortable disclosing if either Stromberg or Fennelly are interested in becoming chief, Erickson said they would both be very qualified.

“I would recommend either one of them,” Erickson said. “I’ve been very blessed with two of the best deputy chiefs I could ask for. They have tremendous work habits, they’re ethical and they’re honest.”

Mayor Dan DiMaria praised Erickson for both growing up in Morton Grove and devoting 30 years of service toward his neighbors’ safety.

“That’s what Morton Grove is all about — family,” DiMaria said.

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