Daniel Derenda – who retired last week as Buffalo police commissioner – has started work for one of the world’s largest private security firms that provides security at Buffalo City Hall.
Derenda, 58, is the general manager for G4S Security Solutions' Buffalo office. He will oversee customer relationships, sales and operational activity in Western New York and Rochester.
“Daniel is a great addition to our G4S team. His commitment to professionalism, as well as his exceptional operational and management experience, are a recipe for success in the Buffalo area,” said Richard Amoroso, vice president of the Northeast region for G4S.
“Daniel is an excellent leader, and we believe our G4S security officers, staff and customers in the Buffalo area will benefit for years to come,” Amoroso said.
In addition to a G4S paycheck, Derenda qualifies for a state pension of around $90,000 a year based on his 32 years with the police department and his age, according to the state retirement calculator on the State Comptroller's website.
The security firm has provided armed security guards at City Hall since 2016. It guides visitors through metal detectors and runs bags through X-ray screening. The security force has found and confiscated switchblades, brass knuckles, Tasers and shanks.
The private guards are allowed to detain a person carrying narcotics other than marijuana, and a guard is posted at all common council meetings, including committee meetings and regular business meetings.
Mayor Byron W. Brown commended Derenda on his new position.
“Daniel Derenda is an extremely experienced and dedicated law enforcement professional. I congratulate him on this new opportunity in the private sector and wish him and his family much success,” Brown said.
Derenda was not immediately available for comment.
Derenda retired last Tuesday after 32 years in the police department, eight of those years as police commissioner. During those 32 years, he rose from street cop to detective sergeant and then deputy commissioner to commissioner. Derenda had been reappointed to the commissioner position earlier this month.
After working on Mayor Byron W. Brown’s first mayoral campaign more than 12 years ago – advising the then-candidate on law enforcement issues – Derenda was elevated from the rank of detective sergeant to deputy police commissioner.
Four years later, the mayor replaced H. McCarthy Gipson, the city’s first black police commissioner, with Derenda. As commissioner, Derenda sought to prove to his critics that a street cop with a healthy dose of common sense and a high school degree could succeed in leading a city police department.
Derenda increased the number of community meetings between police supervisors and the public. He encouraged officers to foster improved relations with citizens while out on patrol.
Brown pointed out that Derenda welcomed city funding of a citizens group known as the Buffalo Peacemakers. The organization works closely with police to prevent street violence and keep lines of communication open during protests to stop them from spiraling out of control.
Derenda also formed collaborations with other area law enforcement agencies to go after violent street gangs and drug dealers. Rather than competing with the other agencies, he said he saw the benefit in bringing resources together.
Derenda also expanded the Internal Affairs Division, which investigates complaints against officers. He established a satellite office at City Hall to make it easier for citizens to file complaints – in case they felt uncomfortable going to Police Headquarters.
Brown named Byron C. Lockwood as Buffalo’s interim police commissioner last Wednesday, putting Lockwood on track to possibly become the city’s permanent top police official.
For that to happen, the mayor would have to submit Lockwood’s name to the Common Council for confirmation at some point within 180 days of the interim appointment.
The City Charter authorizes the mayor to appoint an interim commissioner for that length of time. Brown has said he intends to promote the next commissioner from within the department.