Wollongong's police commander has said goodbye to being the city's top cop boss to take up a 12-month secondment with the Australian Federal Police.
Superintendent Chris Craner this week started as an assistant commissioner in Canberra.
Newly-appointed AFP Commissioner Reece Kershaw asked him to take up the position to help review the projects that fall under the Office of the Commissioner and set up a national co-ordination unit.
"It was an opportunity I could not pass up," Supt Craner said.
He has been Wollongong's commander for the past 18 months and in that time he felt proud of the way he valued and cared for his employees.
He said the arrests and operations were "business as usual" for him and his officers but what he liked seeing was how his troops supported each other and were respectful towards community members in times of tragedy such as the Mount Keira deaths and the M1 double fatal car crash.
"As a commander, my officers are the most important people I need to look after," he said.
"If they are going to put their lives on the line every day then I will put my job on the line.
"We have also built a good relationship with the community through realistic and authentic community engagement sessions.
"I have built a strong relationship with the media and good engagement with kids and the PCYC through the Rise Up program."
There was a state-wide expression of interest to recruit a new commander and a permanent replacement for the role is expected to be appointed shortly.
Supt Craner said he would be giving a handover to the new commander and would "give his two cents worth" about his priorities but then would let the boss run the command the way he or she wanted.
He said he would consider his options after completing the 12 months.
Supt Craner said he would consider staying at the AFP or would come back to NSW Police to fill a vacant position.
"Wollongong has seen a lot of change at the top but that is not necessarily a bad thing if there is good leadership," he said.
"I know stability is important to the troops so I hope whoever is the next commander can stay for two or three years."