The police chief of Allegheny Township, Duane Fisher, is embarking on a new chapter in his career in Eastern Pennsylvania. Fisher, who took over as chief in 2018 following the retirement of Chief John Fontaine, has been appointed as the police chief of Manheim Township, located in Lancaster County. Manheim Township is home to approximately 44,000 residents.
Fisher, a native of York County’s Susquehanna Valley, will assume his new role on either October 9th or October 23rd, as confirmed by Manheim Township Manager Rick Kane. The Manheim Township Police Department consists of 64 sworn officers and 16 to 18 civilian staff members, and Fisher’s starting salary will be $135,000.
Reflecting on his departure from Allegheny Township, Fisher expressed mixed emotions, describing it as a “bittersweet moment.” He acknowledged the warmth and support he received from the community and expressed hope that he had made a positive impact during his tenure.
Fisher intends to submit his resignation letter to Allegheny Township supervisors before or during their upcoming Monday meeting. As of Tuesday, Interim Township Manager Jason Dailey had not yet received Fisher’s formal resignation.
It’s worth noting that Fisher’s departure is part of a trend in Allegheny Township, with several employees leaving their positions this summer. Some elected officials have cited working conditions and tensions among the township’s three supervisors as contributing factors.
Notable departures include administrative assistant Denise Johnston, Director of Public Safety Lee Schumaker, and Township Manager Greg Primm, who all resigned in August, along with the retirement of administrative assistant Susan Teagarden on June 30th.
However, Fisher clarified that his decision to leave Allegheny Township was not related to working conditions. Instead, he explained that he felt he had reached the pinnacle of his career in the township and was excited about the new opportunity to lead a police department with more extensive resources in Manheim.
Prior to his role in Allegheny Township, Fisher served for two decades on Mt. Lebanon’s police force, concluding his tenure as a lieutenant and commander of the support division. He also worked as a part-time police officer in Jackson Township, York County, from 1996 to 1998. Fisher holds a bachelor’s degree from York College of Pennsylvania (1992) and earned a master’s degree in strategic leadership in 2008. He attended the FBI National Academy and obtained a graduate-level certificate in criminal justice education in 2019.
While Allegheny Township supervisors expressed gratitude for Fisher’s service and dedication, they awaited his formal resignation letter before offering detailed comments.
Manheim Township, which covers approximately 24 square miles, conducted an extensive search for its new police chief with assistance from the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association. Out of 26 applicants, six were interviewed, and three finalists were chosen, with Fisher ultimately selected for the position.