HILLIARD, Ohio (WCMH) — The City of Hilliard has named Michael Woods as its next deputy chief of police with the expectation he will take over for Chief Eric Grile when Grile retires.

Woods served as the Columbus Division of Police’s interim chief from January 2021 until his retirement. Hilliard’s Chief Griles said Woods’ leadership experience made him an excellent candidate for the vacancy.

“Ultimately, Michael’s experience, passion, and vision made him the best fit to fill this crucial position in the City,” Chief Grile said.

Woods will begin his new job on September 6 and will work closely with Chief Grile to experience how Hilliard’s top police job operates.

“Knowing that we are hiring the person who will ultimately be leading the division as our next police chief, we were in the fortunate position of interviewing and selecting from several highly experienced candidates,” Grile said.

Woods began his career as a patrol officer with CPD in 1988. He was seen most recently as CPD spokesperson, discussing the city’s uptick in violent crime.

Chief Grile has not yet announced a date for his retirement.