NYPD makes history with first Latino commissioner

Edward Caban, who is of Puerto Rican descent, is the first Hispanic person to lead the New York Police Department, the largest in the nation.


Edward Caban, a Bronx native of Puerto Rican heritage with more than 30 years with the New York Police Department, was sworn in Monday as commissioner, the first Latino to lead the nation's largest police department.

"Not only has Commissioner Caban climbed the ranks, serving in nearly every role within the police department, but policing is in his blood, as he follows in the footsteps of his father, another veteran of the NYPD,” Mayor Eric Adams, a former officer himself, said after he administered the oath of office in front of the Bronx stationhouse where Caban began his career.

Caban's father, a retired NYPD transit police officer, served alongside Adams. Three of Caban's brothers have also joined the NYPD.

After being sworn in, Caban said, “I am humbled" to lead the 33,000-member department.

"Its storied history is a living legacy of valor, bravery, and sacrifice — of ordinary New Yorkers who did extraordinary things," he said. “To be the first Hispanic police commissioner is an honor of the highest measure.”

Edward A. Caban speaks after being sworn in as NYPD police commissioner outside New York City Police Department 40th Precinct on July 17, 2023, in New York.Jeenah Moon / AP

Caban succeeds Keechant Sewell, the first Black woman to lead the NYPD, who resigned as commissioner last month.

Caban, 55, joined the NYPD as a patrol officer in 1991 and was promoted to sergeant in 1994.

He worked in several precincts across the city as he climbed the ranks to lieutenant, captain, executive officer, commanding officer, deputy inspector, inspector and first deputy commissioner.

The NYPD is more diverse compared to the largely white and male force he joined 32 years ago.

According to department, 31% of uniformed officers are Hispanic or Latino. Latinos make up 29% of the city’s population, according to the Census Bureau.

About 11% of the department’s officers are Asian and about 16% are Black, compared with a city population that is about 14% Asian and 24% Black.

In a move that attempts to reflect that diversity, Adams named veteran officer Tania Kinsella as first deputy commissioner.

Kinsella, who is of Jamaican and Guyanese descent, is the first woman of color to serve in that role.

She joined the department in 2003, patrolling the streets in her home borough of Staten Island and rising through the ranks there until becoming the commanding officer of the 120th precinct.

"Commissioner Caban and First Deputy Commissioner Kinsella are the best of the NYPD," Adams said. "They truly understand the importance of both safety and justice, and I look forward to continuing to work with them to help keep our city safe.”