Chief Joseph Esposito has won praise and respect for his leadership style and ability to defuse heated situations. He's also credited with reducing crime and introducing new policing strategies.
Esposito is retiring Wednesday. He's been chief for more than 12 years, longer than any of his predecessors. He was appointed in 2000.
He'll be replaced by Philip Banks, a 26-year veteran and current Chief of Community Affairs. Banks will be officially installed as the department's highest ranking uniformed officer at a promotion ceremony on Thursday.
Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Banks has proven himself time and again to be an outstanding field commander and "consummate builder of community relations."