Paul Schnell was appointed to the position of Chief of Police for the Inver Grove Heights Police Department in December of 2017. Paul previously served as Police Chief in the City of Hastings, Minnesota for three years, and in the City of Maplewood, Minnesota for four years.
Before his first appointment to the role of Police Chief, Paul served with St. Paul Police Department for twelve years holding a range of assignments including: patrol officer, patrol sergeant, sex crimes & family violence investigator, public information officer, training officer, and crisis negotiator. In 2003, Paul was named the St. Paul Police Department’s “Officer of the Year.” Prior to St. Paul, Paul served as a Carver County Sheriff’s Deputy for seven years, holding assignments in investigations, patrol, grant coordinator, and school resource officer.
Paul was former elected board of the Minnesota Chief of Police Association and continues to be an active participant in several of the association’s committees. In 2014, Governor Mark Dayton appointed Paul to the Minnesota Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Board; serving until June of 2017. Early in his career, Paul was twice elected as the President of the Minnesota Juvenile Officers Association.
Paul has received a variety of honors from various organizations throughout his career, including, the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault, Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women, Minnesota Chief of Police Association, St. Catherine University, and the Minnesota Dispute Resolution Center.
In addition to his work in policing, Paul has served as an adjunct instructor at Metropolitan State University, as well as, St. Catherine University and the University of St. Thomas, all located in St. Paul, Minnesota. Paul has also been active as a volunteer board member for several Twin Cities-based not-for-profit organizations.
Paul holds a Bachelor of Social Work Degree from the University of St. Thomas and a Masters Degree in Organizational Leadership from St. Catherine University, both in St. Paul, Minnesota. Paul is also a graduate of the Southern Police Institute’s Administrative Officers Course at the University of Louisville, in Louisville, Kentucky.