THE Policing Board has appointed Drew Harris as the new deputy chief constable of the PSNI.
He pipped ACC Will Kerr to the £156,000 a year post to to work alongside Chief Constable George Hamilton.
It is the first time in more than a decade that two former RUC officers have held the top two posts in the PSNI.
ACC has been responsible for the PSNI’s Crime Operations Department.
He is the top cop who gave the go ahead for Terrorist Investigation Unit the nod to arrest Gerry Adams over the murder of Jean McConville.
His appointment to Deputy Chief Constable was opposed by Sinn Fein over the Gerry Adams incident.
As head of Crime Operation Department, he is also responsible for the TIU; Organised Crime; Major Investigation Teams; Intelligence Branch; Specialist Operations Branch; Analyst Branch; Scientific Support Branch.
ACC Harris os recognised as a national expert in dealing with high risk covert policing operations.
He is also recognised as expert in dealing with critical incidents.
In Feb 2013 he was appointed as a high level expert to a European Parliament Committee reporting on organised crime and corruption.
ACC Drew has held the national ACPO Hate Crime portfolio for eight years where he has led on improving the Criminal Justice response to victims, improving detection rates and improving data collection.
He has also delivered national conferences to highlight Disability Hate Crime and strategies, to improve recording, police response and detection rates in this area, ultimately to protect some of the most vulnerable in society.
The married father of four has a wide experience of policing across Northern Ireland and has held a variety of operational commands.
As an Assistant Chief Constable Drew has also led on PSNI initiatives where he took responsibility for the management of sex offenders and the introduction of Public Protection Units.
ACC Drew has always been focused in protecting the vulnerable in society from serious harm.
In 2002, he completed a two-year secondment in the rank of Superintendent to Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary, Scotland.
He holds a BA (Hons) Degree in Politics and Economics and a M.St in Criminology (Cantab).
He completed the Strategic Command Course in 2004, the Leadership in International Counter Terrorism Course in 2005 and the FBI’s prestigious National Executive Institute programme for senior law enforcement officers in 2010. He is a member of the International Association of Chief Police Officers and a friend of the Windsor Leadership Trust.
Drew has 30 years police service and he received an OBE in the Birthday Honours List, June 2010.