Longtime Lieutenant Named New Chief of Police

Longtime Lt. Jorge Tro will become Canby’s new chief of police following the current chief’s retirement next year, the city announced Monday.

“It is with extreme pleasure (and with the unanimous consent of the Mayor and Canby City Council) I am announcing that Jorge Tro will become the next Chief of Police of Canby upon the retirement of Chief Bret Smith,” Interim City Administrator Joe Lindsay said in an email to city staff, which he forwarded to local media.

The decision to install Tro well in advance of Smith’s retirement will allow Canby PD to “begin the important next steps of transitioning to this new leadership,” Lindsay said, as well as hiring or promoting a new lieutenant.

Tro has been with Canby Police for 23 of his almost 25 years in law enforcement. He’s been the agency’s de facto No. 2 for 15 of those years, and he served as interim chief for 15 months before Smith was hired.

Tro is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, and he holds the highest certification from the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training.

He is also a longtime and very active community member, having lived in Canby for three decades and serving on the boards of directors for The Canby Center, Canby Rotary Club and various local sports organizations, as well as school budget committees.

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His wife, Karen Tro, is a nurse who grew up here and went through Canby schools. They have two grown kids who also went through the Canby school system.

“He is the son of Cuban immigrants that came to America in 1959 with his two older sisters,” Lindsay said. “He has a servant’s heart and is a shining example of hard work, dedication and service.”

Chief Smith announced his retirement at the Sept. 2 Canby City Council meeting, officially effective at the end of that month, though he would remain in place through a work-back arrangement until April 1, 2021.

At that meeting, Smith told the council that he had originally planned to step down in July of this year, but decided to push that out due to the coronavirus pandemic and racial unrest that has occurred throughout the country, as well as several other vacancies at the police department that had not yet been filled.

Smith has served as Canby’s chief since January 2010, following a nearly 29-year career with the Portland Police Bureau, where he retired as an assistant chief.

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