DOJ: News Release

Michael T. Tooley Named Colonel and Chief of the Montana Highway Patrol

HELENA – Attorney General Steve Bullock formally introduced Colonel Michael T. Tooley as the new chief of the Montana Highway Patrol at a ceremony in Helena today.

“When I set out to fill this position, I asked myself: Who would continue to ensure the high degree of professionalism and ethical conduct we need in our troopers? And who would preserve and strengthen the Patrol’s well-deserved reputation as an outstanding law enforcement agency? I believe we couldn’t assign those important tasks to anyone more prepared than Mike Tooley,” Bullock said today at the ceremony.

Tooley was born in Havre and is a Capital High School graduate. He attended Carroll College and was sworn into the Highway Patrol in 1984 where he was initially assigned to the Speed Enforcement Squad and later served at Wolf Point and Stanford. He became District 7 Commander in 2002 and was promoted to Lt. Colonel in 2004.

Tooley holds a B.S. in Public Safety Administration from Grand Canyon University and was a member of Harvard University’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government Class of 2006. Tooley is also a 2008 graduate of the FBI National Academy.

Col. Tooley succeeds Paul Grimstad who after 25 years of service, including over four as Colonel, is leaving the Highway Patrol.

“All of Montana thanks Colonel Grimstad for his years of service and dedication to this state. Our state is a better place because of his hard work,” said Bullock.

Tooley becomes the 17th Chief of the Montana Highway Patrol since the creation of the organization in 1935. The MHP, Montana’s largest law enforcement agency, has 200 troopers and 70 civilian employees. It is the largest division of the Montana Department of Justice.

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