Setter Spotlight: Kevin Sylvester


Photo Courtesy of Kevin Sylvester

Alexis Friedman

When you think of a busy schedule work, kids, and daily activities immediately come to mind.

For Kevin Sylvester, Chief of Police in Ossining and part-time professor at Pace University, work consists of working as an officer of the law, a lawyer, and an adjunct professor while raising two kids and managing his police department’s social media page. 

“The vast majority of the time is spent helping people solve problems,” Sylvester said of his career as an officer.

Though he has grown into the role of the police chief, initially, he never intended to join law enforcement, calling himself “misguided.”

He got his start by joining the Marine Corps after the Sept. 11., terrorist attacks in 2001.

“Everybody I’ve ever known to be in the military, they were what we called ‘squared away,” he stated.

He admired them for their impeccability and their ability to keep their cool.

“My objective in joining the Marine Corps had very little to do with necessarily the military and more of the development [thing] for myself,” exclaimed Sylvester. 

He did not finish his undergraduate studies when he joined the Ossining Police Department after his time in the Corps. However, with some leftover money from the G.I. bill, his boss and mentor pushed him to use his money towards completing those studies.

“It’s a sin to let that money go to waste,” he exclaimed.

 He earned himself a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice in 2011 at SUNY Empire College. He later obtained his J.D. at Pace’s Elisabeth Haub School of Law.

Throughout the years, Sylvester worked his way through the ranks of his police department, eventually landing the role of Chief. From there, he came up with an idea that would help his department connect with the public, social media.

He runs the Ossining Police Department’s Facebook page, giving out updates as to what is happening at the department, public safety alerts, and overall connecting with concerned citizens. 

“What I sort of felt was missing from law enforcement was this opportunity,” the chief explained.

 Sylvester believes that if there were more transparency and more of an attempt to show what goes on in police departments, there wouldn’t be as much mistrust. 

“One of my talents that I found that I had is that I could tell people difficult information in a way that they could easily digest,” he stated. “It gives them a sense of comfort to know that I can say ‘we got it under control’.”