Panel narrows list to 3 for YSU police chief

By Denise Dick


A Mahoning County Sheriff’s Department captain, the chief of Clarion, Pa., and a former chief of Milford, Ohio, are on the short list to become Youngstown State University’s next police chief.

A search commission narrowed a list of 18 applicants to three finalists to fill the job. Jack Gocala, chief since 1991, retired, effective this week.

Ron Cole, YSU spokesman, said a selection is expected in four to six weeks. Lt. Michael Cretella will serve as interim chief until an appointment is made.

John Beshara of Boardman, a captain with the Mahoning County Sheriff’s Department; Mark E. Hall of Shippenville, Pa., chief of Clarion, Pa., borough police; and Mark A. Machan of Milford, Ohio, chief of that southwest Ohio city’s police department for six years, comprise the list of finalists.

The applicants came from New Jersey, Florida, Michigan, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, Nevada, Illinois, Nebraska as well as Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Beshara has been with the sheriff’s department since 1989 and has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in criminal justice/law-enforcement administration from YSU.

Machan, who retired in February 2011 after six years as Milford’s chief, was one of six finalists in 2006 for Boardman police chief. Patrick Berarducci was chosen for that post.

Machan also served eight years as chief of Perry Township Police near Massillon, and has a master’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Cincinnati and a bachelor’s in management from Malone University in Canton.

Hall has been chief of the Pennsylvania borough since 2003 and earned a master’s in criminology and a bachelor’s in administration of justice from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and University of Pittsburgh, respectively.

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