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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

ATF Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Public Affairs Division
Monday, February 13, 2023

ATF Announces New Senior Law Enforcement Partnership Advisor

WASHINGTON – Today, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Director Steven Dettelbach announced Vail Police Chief Dwight Henninger as the first Senior Law Enforcement Partnership Advisor to the Director for ATF.

As Senior Law Enforcement Advisor, Henninger will focus on law enforcement coordination work across 25 ATF field divisions. He will support and enhance ATF’s relationships with law enforcement entities by providing technical expertise and specific program suggestions to help develop and maintain effective, sustainable relationships with local, state, tribal and federal law enforcement agencies, as well as promote ATF partnerships with key local stakeholders. This newly created position is located within the office of the director.

“Everything we do at ATF begins and ends with public safety, and we hold dear our strong local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement partnerships,” Dettelbach said. “That is why we created this high-level position, which will focus exclusively on ATF’s prized relationships with our law enforcement partners. We are thrilled to have a national leader like Chief Henninger join ATF’s team. He brings with him 43 years of law enforcement service, with 21 of those years in key leadership roles, including as chief of police and recently as president of International Association of Chiefs of Police. We are eager to put his knowledge and unique expertise into action at ATF.”

Henninger is retiring in March from the Vail Police Department, where he served as chief of police since 2002. During his tenure, he brought stability to the agency and received many awards from residents and policing professionals in the state and region.

In 2022, Henninger completed a term as president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the world’s largest professional association for police leaders with more than 32,000 members in over 170 countries. As president, Henninger represented Colorado domestically and around the world, helping advance the policing profession globally. His efforts to build a long-term strategy of trust building between policing agencies and the communities they serve has been recognized as a significant shift from the IACP’s previous history of single-year presidential priorities.

“ATF has a long history of supporting their law enforcement partners, and I am looking forward to using the lessons I have learned as president of IACP and as chief of police to help ATF enhance their collaborative efforts across local and state law enforcement to execute on their mission of protecting communities from violent criminals,” Henninger said.

Henninger is a graduate of the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police and the California Peace Officer Standards and Training Command College. He received master’s degrees from University of California, Irvine in Business and Public Administration and from San Diego State University in Leadership.

ATF regulates the firearms and explosives industries and is the lead federal law enforcement agency with jurisdiction involving arson, explosives, firearms and other violent crimes. More information about ATF and its programs is available at

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