WCU names Earnest Hudson director of university police, traffic services

Earnest R. Hudson Jr., assistant chief of police at Western Carolina University since July 2006, has been named director of university police and traffic services at WCU.

Hudson is filling a vacancy that was created by the departure of Tom Johnson, who stepped down from the post after five years to join the faculty of WCU’s department of criminology and criminal justice.

“Mr. Hudson brings a wide range of law enforcement experience and training to a very important campus position,” Chuck Wooten, WCU’s vice chancellor for administration and finance, said in announcing the appointment. “Prior to coming to Western Carolina, he had a very successful 26-year career with the Indianapolis Police Department, rising to the rank of major.”

While working with the Indianapolis police, Hudson held various positions with the organization including executive officer of public safety, special police bureau commander and commander of the police department academy and community education.

Hudson said he is looking forward to the opportunity and unique challenges of leading a university police department.

“The Western Carolina University community enjoys a unique quality of life that is really very hard to find,” he said. “I know that the all members of the department—including our police officers, our Cat-Tran shuttle service drivers and our parking services employees—are committed to providing and continually improving the services that our community deserves and have come to expect from us. Our focus will continue to be service, professionalism, and partnership with faculty, students and staff.” 

Hudson is a 2004 graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy. He also attended Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. He is married to Tammi Hudson, who serves as WCU’s emergency manager.