Mike Blair, who since 2010 has served as a sergeant and then as Chief of Police for the City of University Place, has been promoted to serve as Chief of Staff for Pierce County Sheriff Paul A. Pastor. He will be replaced by Greg Premo, a 25-year veteran of the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department who previously served as an administrative sergeant and patrol officer in U.P.
Blair leaves U.P. with a distinguished record of service that includes building numerous partnerships that support the goal of community-oriented policing. During his tenure as Chief of Police, Blair became known for his outgoing and approachable personality that left community members feeling safe, valued and heard. He advocated for—and received—funding for a new investigator position in the Police Department and oversaw U.P.’s role in the interagency safety plans for the 2015 U.S. Open. He also initiated a new semi-annual Public Safety newsletter for residents and recruited public safety professionals from throughout the region to share their expertise with residents at U.P.’s Public Safety Academy.
“Time and time again, Mike demonstrated that his first and only goal was to support the safety of the people and businesses of University Place,” said U.P. Mayor Kent Keel. “Because of his tireless outreach efforts, he is beloved by his officers, City staff, City Council and the community. Although it should come as no surprise that Sheriff Pastor asked him to serve as his Chief of Staff, his departure is a loss for our community. The good news, however, is that our new Chief of Police Greg Premo has deep ties to U.P. and I’m confident he will continue the tradition of excellence set by Mike.”
Prior to his new position, Premo spent the past nine years at Pacific Lutheran University serving in a contract position for the Sheriff’s Department as the school’s Chief and Director of Campus Safety. Before that, he worked for the Sheriff’s Department in various locations throughout greater Pierce County, including in U.P. “During my two years in University Place, I really enjoyed working collaboratively with City leaders and community members,” he said. “U.P. truly embraces pro-active, problem-solving policing and I am thrilled to come back and be a part of that again.”
Chief Premo also brings to his new role experience in K-9 and marine services and as a Sheriff’s Department field training officer. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Law and Justice from Central Washington University as well as several leadership certifications.
“I know that Chief Premo is anxious to get out and start meeting people in the community,” Mayor Keel said. “Whether at Duck Daze or just while he’s out and about, I encourage everyone to stop and say hello and welcome him back to U.P.”