South Hadley Police Chief Jennifer Gundersen inks new, 3-year contract

  • South Hadley Police Chief Jennifer Gundersen GREG BERNIER ITB PHOTOGRAPHY

Staff Writer
Published: 8/18/2021 10:46:30 AM

SOUTH HADLEY — The town’s police chief has signed a new three-year contract that will keep her in South Hadley until the beginning of 2024.

Police Chief Jennifer Gundersen signed the new contract on July 30, and it will go into effect on Jan. 4, 2022, according to a copy of the contract provided to the Gazette. The deal will see Gundersen’s pay increase to $144,500 the first year, $152,000 the second year and $159,00 in the final year of the contract.

In a statement, Gundersen said she was pleased that Town Administrator Michael Sullivan and the town’s Select Board offered her another three years as police chief. She said South Hadley residents are very engaged in the operations of town government, which is one of the reasons she was drawn to working as police chief in town in the first place.

“I want to serve a community that strives for excellence and holds their public employees accountable,” Gundersen said. “I consider myself fortunate to be a member of the South Hadley Police Department.”

In an Aug. 10 meeting of the Select Board, Sullivan and Select Board member Andrea Miles praised Gundersen.

“I don’t think it will come as a surprise to anyone, she’s very sought after,” Sullivan said.

In the coming years, Gundersen said that ongoing projects will include upgrading the department’s radio system, improving transparency online, and a continued rewriting of the police department’s policy manual.

“Certainly, we are working hard to be in compliance with the new provision of police reform, which will take some work, but the South Hadley officers are definitely up for the challenge,” she said.

Gundersen has a more than 30-year career in law enforcement, eventually rising to the position of captain in the Amherst Police Department before becoming South Hadley’s first woman police chief in 2019.

Dusty Christensen can be reached at

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