Steven Romero has been named chief of police in Ontario. (Submitted photo)

The city of Ontario has its new police chief – Steven Romero of Hawthorne, Calif.

City Manager Adam Brown announced the selection Friday morning, filling a vacancy created when Cal Kunz resigned in January to take a new chief's job.

Romero has worked for the Hawthorne Police Department since 1993, and most recently was a lieutenant. Brown said Romero served as a watch commander over 90 police officers and 40 civilian employees.

Hawthorne is a city of about 88,000 in the heart of Los Angeles not far from Los Angeles International Airport.

"I really believe he can make a big difference with the challenges our city faces," Brown said in a statement.

Romero worked from the Los Angeles Police Department from 1989 until 1993, when he moved to the Hawthorne department. He has bachelor's and master's degrees from California State University at Fullerton.

"I look forward to joining such a great group of people and leading the Ontario Police Department in the near future," Romero said in a statement.

He is expected to take over in 45 to 60 days. His salary will be $97,865, according to the city.