He started his North Carolina career in Havelock, and he’s looking forward to a job that brings him back to where it all began.
Marvin Williams is ready to take up the reigns as the new police chief of Havelock when he is sworn in on Feb. 26.
Along with the police, he will also be over the city’s animal shelter and 911 communications center.
Williams replaces David Magnusson, who retired Nov. 25 after a 34-year law enforcement career, the last three of which were spent as police chief in Havelock.
Though he was born in Arkansas and went to school in Missouri, Williams began his 25-plus year career in law enforcement as a Marine at Cherry Point. He is currently a colonel in the Marine Corps Reserves, awaiting retirement next January. His military service has primarily been with military police work, and during his last tour, he was reserve director for security and emergency services at Camp LeJeune.
He has also retired a year ago, in Greenville, where he was district commander for the N.C. Highway Patrol.
Williams has a bachelor of arts in psychology from Washington University in St. Louis and a master's degree in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College. He has completed police leadership development programs such as the Administrative Management Officer Program at N.C. State University.
He said he looks forward to his new position but doesn’t plan to walk through the door making sweeping changes.
“My plan is to review the culture that’s already there,” he said. “Havelock is one of the safest places in North Carolina, so obviously it’s a program that’s working. I don’t plan to go in and make any changes right away.”
That doesn’t mean no changes at all, down the road.
“I want to see how things work,” he said, “I’m going to talk to the officers and get their ideas and thoughts.”
Then, as he sees fit, alterations could take place.
He aims to continue the police department’s close relationship with the community.
“That’s a big part of 21st century law enforcement,” he said. “That’s going to be one of my first tasks: meeting as many community members as I can and getting their concerns.”
He also looks forward to speaking with business owners at the Havelock Chamber of Commerce.
Williams said that since he began his North Carolina life at Cherry Point, he has an advantage of already having an idea of how things work in the community.
“Havelock is similar to a lot of areas where I’ve worked,” he said. “Right now it appears that the main problems are larceny and robbery.” Even so, “I’ll be utilizing data and looking at what the major trends are.”
Williams has a wife, Kimberly, who is vice president of Convergys Corporation and two college-age daughters. One, Baylea, is a senior at the University of Notre Dame. The other, Jordyn, is a freshman at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
“I’m looking forward to beginning a new career where my career in North Carolina first started,” he said. “It’s exciting for me and my wife to be coming back.”
Williams' annual salary will be $84,000.