KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A New York City police officer is leaving the Big Apple for the Big Orange.

The University of Tennessee Police Department announced Sean Patterson will begin as the department’s assistant chief beginning April 1. He will be responsible for UTPD’s day-to-day operations.

Patterson is leaving the NYPD after more than 20 years of law enforcement experience. He is currently a lieutenant and serves as training coordinator for the Emergency Service Unit, which performs tactical and technical rescues including high-angle rope and water rescues and vehicle extractions.

UTPD Chief Try Lane said Patterson’s experience managing large events will be an asset to the department.

“I was particularly impressed with his personal references, especially those from the Police Executive Research Forum, where he has assisted with curriculum development and delivery in a wide array of areas including critical incident response, police use of force, and de-escalation techniques,” Lane said.

Patterson replaces former UTPD Assistant Chief Keith Lambert. Lambert resigned following an incident where he held a family at gunpoint in their own home. He mistakenly thought it was his home.

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Patterson served as safety officer for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade for the last five years. He also is a retired Navy chief petty officer with 22 years of service including deployments to Bosnia, Kuwait and Iraq.

Sean is married to Anaida Patterson, also a NYPD officer. They have two children: Liam, 10, and Erin, 6.