Mary Lou Berning


  • Cincinnati Police Executive Administrative Assistant
  • Greater Cincinnati Police Historical Society Secretary


MaryLou began her service to the City of Cincinnati during April 1975 as a Clerk Typist I in the Health Department and Cincinnati Police Records Section (222 E. Central Parkway). She was promoted to Clerk Typist II and assigned as the Secretary to the District 7 Commander (813 Beecher Street). When, in 1975, Districts 7 and 4 combined at 4150 Reading Road, she was assigned as the Secretary to District 4 Commander, and future Police Chief, Captain Lawrence E. Whalen. She later transferred to District 3 (3201 Warsaw Avenue) and served a Secretary to a few District Commanders there.

She left City service after the births of her three children and returned August 8, 1999 as Secretary to the District 5 Commander (1012 Ludlow Avenue). One year later, she was promoted to Clerk Typist III and assigned as Criminal Offense Collator in the District Five Investigative Unit. While there, she delved into “old” cases where warrants had been signed and served, but not closed, and she “cleared” more cases in one year than all of the detectives of the unit combined. She also filled in at and proficiently handled every possible civilian job including Front Desk operations, Timekeeper, and Detail Coordinator, and sometimes took on Police Officers’ and Administrative Sergeant’s duties.

On May 12, 2002, she transferred to the Timekeeper’s position in the Criminal Investigation Section. While there, she again served beyond her classification on dozens of Dignitary Protection Details (including several Presidential and Vice-Presidential visits), Robbery Task Forces in 2004 and 2005, the Crime Stoppers International Training Conference in 2004, and as Secretary for the Regional Investigative Supervisors Meetings. During 2006, the City’s Municipal Records Commission asked her to serve as their secretary, a position she still holds.

Ms. Berning was promoted to Administrative Technician on February 24, 2008 and assigned to the Police Chief’s Office. At one time or another she served as the administrative assistant to the commander of every bureau and the Executive Assistant Chief, usually multiple assistant chiefs, and during 2013 and executive transitions, all of the assistant chiefs.

AT Berning joined the Cincinnati Police Historical Society in February 2002 as a Volunteer. She was asked to join the Board of Directors and serve as the Cincinnati Police Department’s liaison. During August 2008 she was elected as Board Secretary and still serves as such. During 2009 she added Officer Manager to her functions. For years she has initiated or proofread almost all of the outgoing correspondence for the Historical Society, Police Museum, Memorial Committee, and its Bereavement Subcommittee, keeps the Museum in office supplies, and volunteers to work at almost every Museum-sponsored event. During May 2016, she escorted Lieutenant Robert Andriot (Retired) in laying the Museum’s wreath at the foot of the Police Memorial Statue.

AT Berning also served the Hamilton County Police Association helping to plan and work at their August meetings at Coney Island and January Installation Banquets. She accepted a request to serve as Secretary on their newly established Records Commission.

In 2015, when the Mt. Healthy Mayor’s Court Clerk suddenly resigned, their police chief asked her to fill in until a new one could be hired. Then a year later, after the new Court Clerk was hired, she was named to the new civilian position of Property Management Officer, a part-time position she still holds. By 2018, she was also named to be the alternate at Mt. Healthy Municipal Records Commission meetings when the Law Director cannot attend.

During 2021, with the retirement of the Executive Administrative Assistant, she acted in that capacity. She continued after the retirement of Chief Eliot Isaac in February 2022 and while Executive Assistant Chief Theetge acted as Interim Police Chief. Several months after Chief Theetge was promoted, MaryLou was officially promoted to Executive Administrative Assistant in late 2023.

In her spare time, Ms. Berning volunteers as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist at St. James of White Oak and during the Blue Masses at St. Peter and Chains Cathedral Basilica and as a volunteer at St. James Church functions.


© All rights reserved to LT Stephen R. Kramer RET and the Greater Cincinnati Police Museum