New Chief Constable Justine Curran proud to be leading Humberside Police
THE new Chief Constable of Humberside Police has spoken of her pride at becoming the first woman to lead the force.
Justine Curran's appointment to the £139,119-a-year job was unanimously approved by the Police And Crime Panel yesterday.
The 45-year-old mother-of-two will take up the role in April after the current Chief Constable Tim Hollis retires.
"It's great to become the first female chief constable," she said.
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"If that can send a positive message to female police officers in particular, but anybody really, then I am really pleased.
"I am a normal woman with two kids and a dog and if I can get this job, it shows that opportunities are open to everybody."
During the hearing to confirm her appointment, panel member and Hull city councillor Colin Inglis said the lack of senior women in the force was a concern.
He told Ms Curran: "If there still is a ceiling of any material, you have broken through it. We have never had a female officer above the rank of chief superintendent and, here you are, about to become the first female chief constable."
Humberside Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Grove described Ms Curran as a "modern-day" police officer.
She has been the chief constable of Tayside Police in Scotland for almost four years.
He nominated Ms Curran for the post after interviewing her and two other candidates. His choice needed to be confirmed by the panel, who yesterday questioned Ms Curran for 90 minutes before voting unanimously to appoint her.
She said: "It was challenging, but it has helped me to understand some of the different issues there are across the area.
"I found it challenging, but rightly so, and now I am relieved and delighted to have been appointed. I think Humberside will be a really exciting place to work.
"The force is in a good place and Tim Hollis has done a fantastic job, but there are more and more challenges ahead. I want us to go from strength to strength."
Ms Curran, a former Hull University student, said she is looking forward to returning to the area with her family.
"The next few weeks will be busy finding a house, finding schools, but it is all very exciting," she said. "As I drove around Hull, I kept seeing how much was changed, then realised it was 28 years since I was there at the uni; that was a scary moment."
See Matthew Grove's new monthly column on page 15.