City of Ames to host public presentations for police chief finalist


Ames Interim Police Chief Geoff Huff speaks on the 45-page staff report on local law enforcement strategies in September.

Kate Kealey

Geoff Huff, finalist for the Ames police chief position, and John Justiniano of Winchester, California, will give public presentations as part of the two-day on-site interview process. 

After the retirement of Ames Police Chief Chuck Cychosz in August 2020, the new police chief is expected to start this summer.

The presentations will be at Farwell T. Brown Auditorium in the Ames Public Library. Huff is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Monday, and Justiniano’s will be 4:30 p.m. June 14. After the city of Ames conducted a national search, Huff and Justiniano were the top candidates. 

City officials continue to invite public feedback throughout the process, and during each presentation, the candidates will take questions from the audience. 

Huff currently serves as interim police chief and has worked with the Ames Police Department since 1994. Over this time, Huff’s titles have included police officer, corporal, sergeant, lieutenant and officer commander. 

Huff has a bachelor’s degree in criminology from the University of Northern Iowa and a master’s degree in criminal justice from the American Military University. Huff is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy. 

Justiniano graduated from the University of Phoenix with his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice management and a master’s degree in administration of justice and security. 

Justiniano served as a Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy with numerous assignments, including Master-at-Arms, Chief Master-At-Arms and temporary Senior Enlisted Advisory in the Force Protection Department. Justiniano retired honorably from the Navy and was appointed as the deputy chief of police at Detachment Fallbrook. There, he led a police department of 31 officers and staff.

Requirements for the position include a bachelor’s degree in police science, criminal justice, management or a closely related field with a minimum of seven years of experience in public law enforcement. The estimated annual salary for the Ames police chief is between $101,601.97 and $157,699.57.