On December 17, 2020, Ms. Amal Awad was sworn in as the first African American female Chief of Police for Anne Arundel County, Maryland. Awad is the first female, the first person of color, and the first member of the LGBTQ community to serve as permanent Chief of Police in Anne Arundel County.
Ms. Awad was born in Washington, DC, and raised primarily by her mother, along with her six siblings in Landover, MD. She joined the Prince Georges’s Police Department in 1991 as a patrol officer. While there, Awad rose in the ranks, supervising the robbery-suppression team, working as a patrol shift commander, and, before retiring as a major, overseeing the district station that covers Bowie (Prince George’s County, Maryland).
After leaving the Prince George’s County Police Department, Awad served as Civilian Chief of Staff under former Anne Arundel County Police Chief Kevin Davis for one year. Following that service, she became Chief of Police in Hyattsville, Maryland. While in Hyattsville, Awad is credited with introducing modern policing strategies and convincing the administration to increase its investment in pay for both sworn and civilian employees. She has many years of working in small localities with diverse populations.
Amal earned a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University with honors, as well as graduating from the Police Executive Research Forum Senior Management Institute. She credits her mother and her upbringing for the ability to work with people from all walks of life.
County Executive Stewart Pittman indicated that Ms. Awad’s heart is what set her apart from the other candidates. He stated that the county needed “a Chief who knows how to take care of others in their time of need, and Awad clearly demonstrates both strength and empathy to the people around her.” Awad indicated that she has dedicated more than half of her life to the noble profession of police work and that she “looks forward to working with the County Council and earning the trust of everyone in this beautiful county.”
The County Council unanimously passed a resolution in support of Chief Awad.