If Mario Lattanzio, Albany’s new police chief, hadn’t gone into law enforcement, he might have become an engineer designing turbine engines.
Lattanzio, formerly an assistant chief with the Mesa (Ariz.) Police Department, was sworn in Friday as the chief for the Albany Police Department. He starts his new job Monday.
It’s been a hectic time for Lattanzio and his family — the moving trucks arrived only on Friday at the family’s new home – but a Democrat-Herald reporter, trying to get a better sense of the man behind the badge, fired off some email questions during the past few weeks.
Here are some of the responses from the 47-year-old Lattanzio:
Lattanzio said he is a fan of pickup trucks because they are versatile and “they allow you to carry larger items without having to pay someone else to do that.” To transport those big loads, Lattanzio has owned several Ford F150s.
He also drives a Chevrolet Avalanche. His other car is a 2010 Camaro, although he said “I am thinking of trading the Camaro in for a Jeep Grand Cherokee.”
Albany’s former chief, Ed Boyd who retired at the end of May, also drives a Camaro.
So what is Lattanzio’s favorite type of music?
He prefers rock ‘n’ roll and heavy metal music from the 1980s and ’90s. His favorite artists are Van Halen, Rush, AC/DC and Metallica.
“I love upbeat music more than slow,” he said.
Action and science fiction movies are what he watches the most. Top on his list are “Captain America,” “Star Trek,” and “Thor.” “Star Trek” was the last movie he saw.
“I have a 3D TV with surround sound,” he said. “I do like to watch action movies so you can feel the explosions.”
Does he like to read books? Not so much.
“I do not read a lot,” he said. “Most of my reading is magazines for work and articles from the Police Executive Research Forum or the magazines produced by the International Association of Police Chiefs.”
Outside of work, Lattanzio enjoys hiking, especially with his 16-year-old son. He is looking forward to wandering the trails around Oregon.
Lattanzio also runs and lifts weights, but he spends most of his free time with his family, which also includes his wife and a 21-year-old daughter.
Residents of Albany might occasionally see Lattanzio dining out in a restaurant.
“I do like to go out to eat,” he confessed. His favorite restaurant is Outback Steakhouse. “We need to have one built in Albany, but I also like Italian and Mexican foods.”
His favorite menu items at the Outback are the specials, the hamburgers and their “tangy tomato dressing.”
Lattanzio made it a top priority to mentor Hispanic high school students with the Mesa Public School system, where he advised students preparing for college.
“We helped guide students, urged them to do well in high school and explained what they needed to be doing to get accepted into a university,” he said.
His professional affiliations include the Executive Research Forum and the International Association of Police Chiefs.