City Council set to approve at meeting on Dec. 12

ATASCADERO — The City of Atascadero is pleased to announce the selection of a new Police Chief. After a nationwide search and comprehensive process, City Manager James R. Lewis has selected Chief Daniel B. Suttles to serve as the next Chief of Police for Atascadero. 

Suttles has 20 years in law enforcement, most recently as the Chief of Police for the Bear Valley Police Department in the Tehachapi area of Kern County. Suttles began his law enforcement career with the Glendale Police Department starting as a patrol officer, then a detective with the Investigative Services Division and worked his way up through the organization serving as a Patrol Officer/ S.W.A.T. of the Field Services Division, to a Sergeant of the Patrol Bureau, Financial Crimes Unit, Internal Affairs and onto a Sergeant/ Adjutant to the Chief of Police/ Public Information Officer and finishing as the Lieutenant — Patrol Commander. In 2022, Suttles continued his career path in law enforcement becoming the Chief of Police for the Bear Valley Police Department. Before he started his law enforcement career, Suttles worked as a Home Mortgage Loan Officer and served as a Reconnaissance Marine in the U.S. Marine Corps with deployment overseas and combat action.

Chief Daniel Suttles career includes developing and implementing an emergency action response plan for disaster preparedness, a strong focus to leadership development, and a collaborative list of community engagements including weekly outreach “Chats with the Chief,” citizen group meetings, Elder outreach programs, public safety and involvement in a host of public platforms from volunteers to schools to community groups and the media.


“Dan is the perfect person to lead our Police Department at this time in our City,” said City Manager Jim Lewis. He is a humble, collaborative servant leader that has an excellent grasp on modern police practices while understanding the unique needs of a community our size. He is a kind, compassionate, and sincere leader that will connect well to our department and members of our community. I’m thrilled he is coming on board.” 

Additionally, Lewis stated, “His philosophy and community values mirror our City’s and he believes in developing and maintaining strong community partnerships that are similar to what we strive for in our community. His background focuses on community engagement and relationship building, which is key to what we are already doing here and as a result of that, he is committed to continuing the high standards of the Atascadero Police Department. Chief Dan Suttles has a solid background in law enforcement from working his way up in the larger law enforcement agency, the Glendale Police Department to the smaller agency, like Bear Valley. He understands the importance of hard work to keep a community safe and what it takes to keep a community vibrant. He also understands the importance of business partnerships to foster trust and cooperation between the members of the department and the community.”

Chief Suttles confirmation and contract approval will be before the Atascadero City Council on December 12, 2023. If confirmed, he will begin service on January 8th, 2024.

Chief Suttles is married to wife Diana, and they have three Sons, Joseph (21), Jack (19), and Devin (9). Joey and Jack are currently serving in the United States Coast Guard.

Special thank you to Peckham & McKenney, the agency that assisted the City with the recruitment process.

Please join us in welcoming Chief Dan Suttles!