Christine Elow Named Acting Police Commissioner of Cambridge Police Department


Superintendent Elow

City Manager Louis A. DePasquale has announced the appointment of Superintendent Christine Elow as Acting Commissioner of the Cambridge Police Department effective Saturday, August 21, 2021. Elow takes over for Commissioner Branville G. Bard, Jr., who accepted a new opportunity with the Johns Hopkins Institutions after leading the Department for the past four years.   

City Manager DePasquale said, “I am pleased to appoint Superintendent Elow as Acting Police Commissioner. Growing up in Cambridge and spending her entire career with the Cambridge Police Department, Christine has demonstrated strong leadership and a fervent commitment to the safety and betterment of our community. She cares deeply about this City and procedural justice. I am proud to have her serve as the Acting Police Commissioner.”

Elow has been with the Cambridge Police since joining as an officer in 1995 after serving in the U.S. Navy for four years. She served in the Patrol Division and oversaw the Professional Standards Unit, where she was responsible for receiving, processing, and investigating complaints made against members of the Department. She later served as Deputy Superintendent for Day Patrol and Community Services. In 2017, Elow was appointed Superintendent, making her the highest-ranking female officer in the history of the Department. She is a strong proponent of community-driven policing, juvenile justice issues, procedural justice, police training and innovative hiring practices. Elow holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice Administration from Curry College and a Master's Degree from the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security Program.

Elow said, “It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to lead a police department in the City I grew up in and love dearly. I am truly honored to have the opportunity to serve in this role and plan on doing everything I can to help the Department advance its mission and serve as the model for policing in Massachusetts and the country.” 

In addition to Elow being appointed as Acting Commissioner, Deputy Superintendent Robert Lowe will be appointed Acting Superintendent of the Support Services Division. Lowe, who also grew up in Cambridge and joined the Cambridge Police Department in 2001, was most recently the Commanding Officer for the Family and Social Justice Section. Acting Superintendent Lowe joins Superintendent Leonard DiPietro as part of the Department’s senior leadership team.

“I want to congratulate Acting Commissioner Elow and Acting Superintendent Lowe on their appointments. Their dedication to building public trust and longstanding roots in the community make them excellent choices to fill these roles during this transition,” said Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui.

“Cambridge PD is a nationally recognized agency and there is no one more prepared to lead it moving forward than Christine Elow,” said Commissioner Bard. “Superintendent Elow and Deputy Superintendent Lowe have been valuable members of my Command Staff and are highly regarded within the community. They are proven leaders who have earned these appointments and I have complete confidence in their abilities to help lead the Department going forward.”   

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Cambridge Police Department

Christine Elow
Acting Police Commissioner

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