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Assistant Chief Mark Fortner Announces Intention to Retire 
Assistant Chief Mark Fortner, the second-in-command of the Knoxville Police Department and over 30-year veteran, has announced his intention to retire at the end of January 2024.

Assistant Chief Fortner

“For the last 30-plus years, I got to do something where I was able to help people and make a difference,” Chief Fortner said. “The department was good to me, and I will miss the people and being here on a daily basis. Outside of playing first base for Cleveland, there’s nothing else I would have rather done.”

Fortner was appointed as the Assistant Chief in December 2021. Following Chief Eve Thomas’s retirement in May 2022, Fortner served as the Acting Chief of Police until Chief Paul Noel was sworn in on June 13, 2022.

“I am beyond grateful to Assistant Chief Fortner on a personal level for all that he did to assist me during my transition into my role as the Chief of Police. More importantly, I am grateful for his immeasurable contributions to our department,” Chief Noel said. “Mark didn’t hesitate to step up and serve as the Acting Chief during a significant transition for our department, and he deserves a tremendous amount of credit for holding the department together in a time of uncertainty.”

“Chief Fortner has selflessly and honorably served the residents of Knoxville for his entire adult life, and has been an invaluable member of our leadership team,” Chief Noel added. “We wish him nothing but the absolute best in retirement, and I look forward to celebrating his many professional accomplishments in the coming weeks.”

Prior to his appointment as the Assistant Chief, Fortner served as the Chief’s Executive Officer under Chief Thomas. He stepped into that role in June 2020 after previously serving as a patrol Lieutenant for over a decade. Fortner, who was promoted to Lieutenant in 2005, also served the KPD as a patrol Sergeant and the commander of the former Central Business District. Fortner graduated from the KPD training academy in June 1993 and was promoted to Sergeant in 1998.

Fortner also served on the KPD’s Special Operations Squad, both as a team member and team supervisor, for over 20 years. He joined the SOS team in 1996 and retired from it in 2021 upon his appointment as the Assistant Chief.  

“I leaned on Assistant Chief Fortner during some big challenges and transitions,” said Mayor Indya Kincannon. “He was always there for me, for KPD, and for the city. I am grateful for his service and wish him the best in retirement.”

A retirement ceremony will be held to recognize all of Chief Fortner’s significant professional accomplishments in January.
Posted by serland On 06 December, 2023 at 3:28 PM