Dep. Chief William Gordon

Founder of America’s National Police Comfort Dog Program,

with K9 “Clarence”

Deputy Chief Gordon has been a Massachusetts police officer since 1989. In the 1990’s Gordon served several years as a D.A.R.E. officer, bicycle patrol officer and worked as a community police officer. Gordon was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2000, a Lieutenant in 2007 and a Deputy Chief in 2021. Gordon has been issued many department commendations including four lifesaving awards and the 2019 Western Massachusetts Officer of the Year Award. He has an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice from Greenfield Community College, a Bachelor of Science degree in Law Enforcement and a Master of Science degree in Criminal Justice Administration from Western New England University. He is the co-founder of K9 First Responders, a non-profit that responds with comfort K9’s to traumatic events throughout the nation. He is also known to be founder of America’s National Police Comfort Dog Program and dog handler, starting the program in 2012.

Deputy Chief Gordon and his now late partner, Officer Clarence, a 175 pound Saint Bernard were deployed to comfort first responders in most of the nation’s worst massacres in the last eleven years, including Sandy Hook, Boston Bombing, Las Vegas and Pittsburgh Massacres.

Officer Clarence’s final official appearance was at the U.S. Capitol Rotunda comforting President Biden, the Speaker of the House, Senate Majority Leader, and countless members of Congress during and after the funeral services for a line-of-duty death of a U.S. Capitol Police Officer.

Officer Clarence was named as the “Nation’s First Police Comfort Dog” by many publications. Officer Clarence has received numerous awards for his work, including the 2012 New York Animal Medical Center’s Top Dog award and the Honorary Therapy Dog of Sandy Hook award and many local community awards.

Off duty, Officer Clarence enjoyed working as an animal model and appeared in many print and video commercial advertisements and on several televisions shows, most notably Saturday Night Live.


Contact Information:

William R. Gordon, MSCJA, Deputy Chief

Department of Police City of Greenfield

321 High Street

Greenfield, MA 01301