SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WWLP) – Mayor Domenic Sarno appointed Cheryl Clapprood as permanent Police Commissioner of the Springfield Police Department Friday morning.

She is Springfield’s first woman Police Commissioner. Mayor Sarno made the announcement in the Commissioner’s Boardroom at the Springfield Police Department on 130 Pearl Street at 11:45 a.m.

“Commissioner Clapprood has done an exemplary job and has been well received and respected by the public and our Police Department during some very trying and challenging times in the world of policing. From fast-tracking the implementation of body-worn cameras to continuing to expand our C3 Neighborhood Policing to moving P.E.R.F. reform initiatives that strengthen and enhance community-police relations, Commissioner Clapprood’s tough, fair, heartful and decisive leadership style and vision has brought stability and confidence to our public and our department. Again, I thank her and our ‘men and women in blue’ for their continued brave and dedicated efforts to keep all our residents, neighborhoods and business community safe and sound.”

-Mayor Domenic J. Sarno

Commissioner Clapprood has been the acting Springfield Police commissioner for the past six months, since the sudden retirement of Commissioner John Barbieri.

Clapprood is a 40 year veteran of the Springfield Police Department. She began in April of 1979 as a police cadet and has worked her way up, through the ranks to commissioner. Commissioner Clapprood told 22News how she never expected to reach this level in her law enforcement career.

“I remember telling my parents I’d like to be a lieutenant all I wanted to be was a lieutenant I just thought that was a cool rank,” Clapprood told 22News. “You can blame people lower than you you can blame people higher than you and then I just kept taking tests and it just kind of worked out. Everything happens for a reason. I’m not sure what this reason is but I’m going to give it 110 percent.”

Clapprood said at no time did she ever feel that it was a temporary position.

“I’m honored in the confidence Mayor Sarno has shown in me and his continued support. I am thankful for the support the women and men of the department have given me, both sworn and civilian.  I am anxious to continue the important programs and changes I started as acting commissioner.”

-Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood said in a press release sent to 22News.

Clapprood said her main focuses are to hire at least 50 new police officers and the launch and implementation of body-worn cameras.

Mayor Sarno said a formal swearing-in ceremony will take place in the very near future. He didn’t specify when.