Oak Park swears in new police chief — and she's already making history

The village of Oak Park has sworn in its new police chief, and she is already making history. 

However, she isn't new to the department.

She has served in various roles on the force for the last two decades.


Chief Shatonya Johnson, who grew up on the South Side of Chicago, has served as a neighborhood resource officer, detective, juvenile specialist, negotiator and deputy chief with the department.

She says she already has big plans for the department moving forward.

"One of the biggest things I want to do is just move past some of the things, the negativity that’s been going on in policing and just help them to see that there is a different way to police, it’s all through community engagement and procedural justice," said Johnson. "I really believe it starts with trust and in order to build trust you have to be present, you have to be accessible, and you have to be transparent."

Chief Johnson's promotion follows the retirement of former Chief LaDon Reynolds, who is now a U.S. Marshal.