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First woman police chief appointed in the history of the Cherokee Indian Police Department

Eastern Band of Cherokee Police Chief Carla Neadeau was sworn in September 1st at the Tribal Council House.
Courtesy of Principal Chief Richard Sneed's office
Eastern Band of Cherokee Police Chief Carla Neadeau was sworn in September 1st at the Tribal Council House.

The Eastern Band of Cherokee's new police chief is the first woman to head the department. Carla Neadeau was sworn in on Monday.

The previous police chiefresigned in June.

Principal Chief Richard Sneed congratulated Neadeau on the position calling this a “historic day.”

“We’ve been extremely pleased with the work that Carla Neadeau has done as interim Chief of Police these past months, and it is my esteemed honor to congratulate her as our newly appointed Chief of Police of the Cherokee Indian Police Department,” said Sneed in a statement. "This is a historic day, she will be the first female chief of police of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians."

In a statement directed to Neadeau, he said, “Carla, I know that you will do all in your power to serve and protect the citizens of the Qualla Boundary.”

Neadeau has been with the CIPD since 2009 and has been a manager for eight years.

Former police chief Josh Taylor resigned in June after just under 11 months on the job. Taylor said that he was stepping down to focus on his health and his family.

“I know it looks out of nowhere on the front. I’m not going to tell people my personal stuff. But with my momma, my wife, my kids, this has been something that we have been talking about for a while, to be honest,” Taylor told the Cherokee One Feather in June.

Neadeau was sworn in as the new police chief on September 1st.

Lilly Knoepp is Senior Regional Reporter for Blue Ridge Public Radio. She has served as BPR’s first fulltime reporter covering Western North Carolina since 2018. She is from Franklin, NC. She returns to WNC after serving as the assistant editor of Women@Forbes and digital producer of the Forbes podcast network. She holds a master’s degree in international journalism from the City University of New York and earned a double major from UNC-Chapel Hill in religious studies and political science.