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January 16, 2014


Chief Leaves Nutley Police Department after 41 Years of Service

(Newark, NJ) – Former Nutley Police Chief John U. Holland was honored by the Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders for his 41 years of service to the Nutley Police Department and the residents of Nutley during its Wednesday, January 15, 2014, meeting held at the Hall of Records.  The Board’s commendation was sponsored and presented by District 5 Freeholder Brendan W. Gill of Montclair, whose district includes the Township of Nutley.

Retired Nutley Police Chief John U. Holland (left) receives a Commendation from Essex County District 5 Freeholder Brendan Gill in recognition of his 41 years of service.  The presentation was made at the Hall of Records in Newark during the Board’s January 15, 2014, meeting.  PHOTO BY GLEN FRIESON

“Chief, being a police officer or a chief of police is a difficult and dangerous job, to say the least, and one for which you never get enough credit or thanks”, said Freeholder Gill.  “But one of the things I have the privilege to do is to recognize people who have served our community, our county and our state… so, on behalf of the Board and the residents of Nutley and Essex County, it is my honor to thank you for your service, wish you all the best in your future endeavors, and present you with this commendation from the Board.  Thank you, and congratulations.”

Accepting his commendation, Chief Holland spoke about Sir Robert Peel, who founded London, England’s, Metropolitan Police Force in 1829, created the modern concept of policing, and who said, “Policemen are members of society who happen to be paid for doing what all good citizens should do all the time.”  “I took Peel’s words to heart when I took my oath of office as a Nutley Police Officer in 1972”, said Holland.  “I have never considered policing a job, but rather a labor of love, and 41 years later I still feel the same way.”  He continued, “It has been an honor and a privilege to serve, and I would do it all over again.  I am very humbled by this recognition from the Board of Freeholders, and I especially want to thank Freeholder Brendan Gill for honoring me.”

Holland retired as Chief of the Nutley Police Department on October 3, 2013.  He was born in Newark and raised in Belleville, attended Bloomfield Tech, and shortly after his graduation was drafted into the U. S. Army where he served with the 39th Combat Engineer Battalion in the Republic of South Vietnam.  Following his military service, he joined the Nutley Police Department in September 1972 and also enrolled at William Paterson College, from which he graduated with honors in 1977 and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Safety Administration.

After joining the Nutley Police Department, Holland progressed to the rank of Sergeant in 1977, to Captain in 1986, and to Deputy Chief in 1990, when he was also selected to attend the prestigious FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia.  On March 4, 2004, he was sworn in as Chief of Police, the position he held for more than nine years until his retirement.

In addition to serving his country in the Vietnam War, Chief Holland also served with the New Jersey Air National Guard’s 108th Air Refueling Wing from 1988-2006.  In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack, he was called to active duty and within months was flying combat missions over Afghanistan as a crewmember on a KC135 aerial tanker, for which he was awarded the Air Medal for his participation in Operation Enduring Freedom.  He was also a frequent participant in Operation Noble Eagle, flying combat air patrols over Washington, D. C.

Holland has also volunteered to serve his community as president of the Nutley Music Boosters Association, an organization that supports instrumental music programs in the Nutley Public Schools.  He is also a member of the American Legion, AMVETS, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Vietnam Veterans of America.  He has resided in Nutley with his wife, Doreen, since 1974, and they are the proud parents of Sean and Wendy.


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For Additional Information:
Gary Kroessig, Public Information
Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders




Board of Chosen Freeholders, County of Essex
Hall of Records - Room 558, 465 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Blvd., Newark, New Jersey 07102
Tel: (973) 621-4486 Fax: (973) 621-5695