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Bartlett gets new police chief, the first female chief in Carroll County history

Union Leader Correspondent

April 26. 2015 8:44PM

Janet Hadley Champlin, who on April 17 was sworn in as Bartlett's newest police chief and in the process became the first female chief in Carroll County history. (John Koziol/Union Leader Correspondent)

BARTLETT — When Janet Hadley Champlin threw her hat into the ring to become the town’s next police chief, she did so because of the opportunity to continue in a career that she loves in a community that she calls home.

But in getting the job and shortly after being sworn in on April 17, Champlin also made history, unbeknownst to her at the time, when she became the first female police chief in Carroll County.

A native of Connecticut, Champlin, after a fortuitous meeting with a guidance counselor, decided upon a career in law enforcement, and in 1983, she was the first female officer hired by the Chesire, Conn., Police Department. There, she earned two State of Connecticut Congressional Awards for driving while intoxicated enforcement.

In 1988, Champlin came north to New Hampshire and joined the Portsmouth Police Department, where over a career that spanned 20 years, she served as a patrol officer, detective, sergeant, lieutenant and captain. Assigned to the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Drug Task Force for four years during her tenure as a Portsmouth detective, she worked as an undercover narcotics investigators and was captain of the Portsmouth police’s Bureau of Investigative Services until her retirement.

Between 2008 and 2012, when she joined the Bartlett Police as the department’s prosecutor, Champlin was a consultant and investigator throughout New Hampshire and Maine. She was named Bartlett’s interim chief this past January when then-Chief Timothy Connifey retired.

A 2005 graduate of the F.B.I. National Academy, Champlin earned a bachelor’s degree in behavioral science from Granite State College and a master’s certificate in Criminal Justice Education from the University of Virginia.

During her career, Champlin has received various awards, among them a New Hampshire Congressional Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement and the 2008 New England Women in Law Enforcement award from Roger Williams University. She is a former supervisor for the Field Training Program, Commander of the Northern New England Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and was the supervisor of the Crisis Negotiation Team for the Seacoast Emergency Response Team.

She served on the board of directors of the Seacoast Child Advocacy Center and the Working Dog Foundation.

Champlin, who was one of seven candidates to vie for the Bartlett chief’s job, said during an April 24 interview that “I have a vested interest in the Town of Bartlett,” adding that since she became chief, “everybody’s been wonderful and supportive.”

She hoped residents who don’t know her, and even those who do, will attend a seminar at 6 p.m. today at the Glen Fire Station where she and Jackson Police Chief Douglas Jette will hold a seminar on how to prevent identity theft.

Champlin downplayed any history that she has made by virtue of her gender alone, saying that being a police officer “is about reaching out to the community. I was brought up with community policing and the need to work with residents and business owners” to address both serious crime and quality-of-life issues, too.

Although Bartlett is a small town, “We’re seeing the effects of opiate and heroin addiction,” Champlin said. This requires police to form partnerships with many other stakeholders.

The chief said she looked forward to “bringing my 30-year skill set” to good use in her new post and to making Bartlett “an even better community to live in.”

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