Lt McGowan 2021


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Deputy Chief of Police


Nicholas McGowan

Deputy Chief Nick McGowan began his law enforcement career in 2003 as a police officer for the Town of San Anselmo. He joined the Petaluma Police Department in July 2006, where he served in various roles, including Patrol Officer, Field Training Officer, Gang Officer, Defensive Tactics Instructor, SWAT Operator, Detective, and member of the San Francisco Electronic Crimes Task Force.

In 2017, he was promoted to Sergeant, supervising patrol teams, the Gang Enforcement Team, the SWAT Team, the Peer Support Team, the Defensive Tactics Team, and the Traffic Team. In March 2021, he graduated from the 455th session of the Sherman Block POST Supervisory Leadership Institute, earning the distinguished honor of being the class speaker.

In 2021, Deputy Chief McGowan was promoted to Lieutenant, overseeing patrol, community health, fleet operations, scheduling, and the police canine program. In 2022, he played a pivotal role in developing and implementing the Professional Standards Division (PSD), which focused on establishing the Department’s first Independent Police Auditor and the Public Safety Advisory Committee.

In 2024, he was promoted to Deputy Chief of Police.

Deputy Chief McGowan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Sonoma State University and a Master’s in Cybersecurity Studies from American Military University. He has also earned his POST Advanced, Supervisory, and Management Certificates.

Deputy Chief McGowan is the City of Petaluma Employee Wellness Committee co-chair and a member of the City of Petaluma DEIB Core Team.  Deputy Chief McGowan is also affiliated with several professional organizations, including the California Police Chiefs Association (CPCA), International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), California Association of Tactical Officers (CATO), California Narcotics Officer Association (CNOA), and the California Police Officers Association (CPOA). He also serves as an adjunct faculty instructor at Santa Rosa Junior College, where he teaches classes for the Public Safety Training Center.

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