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Stuart VanHoozer named Cobb County Chief of Police


Following a 32-year career with the department, Stuart VanHoozer is the new Chief of Police for Cobb County.

VanHoozer was recommended by County Manager Dr. Jackie McMorris for the top role. Dr. McMorris said VanHoozer became a finalist for the job from a group of more than 50 candidates after he distinguished himself as the clear leader. 

Said McMorris, “We’re very proud to say today we strongly believe we have chosen the most qualified, best-suited police chief for the county. We believe he will take Cobb and our police department to 21st century policing.”

A Cobb native, VanHoozer grew up one of five children with a single mother, coming from “pretty much nothing,” as he put it. When he joined the department in 1990, he said he had “no skills,” “nothing special,” and was living off a $5.25 per hour salary in a Mableton basement that flooded in heavy rain. VanHoozer said he expected to live out his career as an unremarkable patrol officer but that has all changed.

Chief VanHoozer said, “I had no skills, I had nothing special, I had no military, I had no prior police experience, and I had no education. Cobb County Police hired me and they put me in a little bitty thing called a beat, and they gave me one little section of turf to protect for eight hours.  And I fell in love with this job.”

VanHoozer first joined the department in 1990. A graduate of Kennesaw State University and the FBI National Academy, VanHoozerhe has worked in the department’s narcotics and internal affairs units, among other postings. He had been sharing interim chief duties with Scott Hamilton after the vacancy opened in December when then Chief Tim Cox announced he would retire from the department. Chief VanHoozer takes the reins of the police department effective immediately. 

VanHoozer was congratulated and welcomed to his new role by Dr. Ben Williams, head of the Cobb chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He pledged to be persistently in his ear saying, “If you’re right, I will stand up for you and speak out for you, but also, if you’re not right, and you want to correct it, I’m there.”

VanHoozer lives in Cobb with his wife Leslie and is the father of three sons.


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