Major Angela Coonce, a 24-year veteran of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and a champion of community policing, serves as the chief of police for the Washington University in St. Louis Police Department. Coonce focuses on progressive and inclusive public safety strategies and ensure our campuses remain welcoming and safe for every community member. Coonce oversees a team of some 47 deputized officers and 20 professional staff and implement the recommendations outlined in the Public Safety Committee Report, including creating new standards for engaging community members beyond emergency situations; developing a comprehensive recruitment and retention strategy; and improving cultural education for officers.
Coonce has had a long and diverse career, most recently serving as commander of the North Patrol Division, which includes the two most challenging police districts in St. Louis City and accounts for one-third of its geographic area. In that role, Coonce dramatically expanded community outreach efforts that resulted in lower crime rates and improved relationships with residents.
Coonce earned her undergraduate degree at Harris-Stowe State University and a graduate degree in management and leadership from Webster University. She earned a second graduate degree in security studies from the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security in Monterey, California. She also was a member of the inaugural cohort of the University of Missouri–St. Louis’ Diversity, Equity and Inclusion certificate program.