Anchorage (KTUU) — The Anchorage Police Department is getting behind the No Shave November movement by allowing officers to grow a beard — something they've never been able to do until now, and Deputy Chief of Police Ken McCoy said when the word spread, the participation levels were immediate.
Officers William Zimmer, Joseph Gaona, Seth Duque, Charles Reeve and Sergeant Noel Senoran are just some of APD's sworn taking part.
Some of them were coming off of an overnight shift while others were just beginning their day, but they all took some time to share why they were happy to represent the badge and beard. More than 80 officers signed up to toss aside their razors, and what started out as a goal of raising $5,000 for cancer education was quickly surpassed in the first couple days.
"I'm really pleased at our officers stepping forward and trying to make a difference," McCoy said.
Officers said growing a beard isn't as easy as it seems, and beard envy around the department is strong.
"I've never tried. This is new territory for me, so this is all like new," Officer Senoran said.
"Some guys grow beards better than others, and you get to kind of harass the other guys," Officer Reeve said.
"I have to consciously think about not shaving it off each morning," added McCoy.
Full, partial or barely there, growing beards is all part of a growing conversation the department is happy to have.
"There are a number of people in this department and when you get this momentum and this movement and it's been great to hear their stories," McCoy said.
For officers who have to constantly show their tough side, losing the beard could change that. When asked if this could be a permanent policy, McCoy said "We'll see, we'll see."
As of 5 a.m. Tuesday morning, officers had raised more than $17,000.
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