Five uncovered secrets about police chief

by Life Editor Tyler Hargett

Students and faculty know Kevin Gillilan as UNA’s police chief who works to keep them safe on campus.

However, just like everyone else, Gillilan has a life outside work, which The Flor-Ala is now able to share.

1. He has a singing career, both solo and with a Christian band.

While in high school, Gillilan, along with some friends, decided to participate in talent shows. After winning one, they eventually signed with ICA Records as the contemporary Christian band, Vocal Boys.

They were active from 1990-1996, producing several albums and performing with other popular ‘90s Christian artists. Gillilan said he left the band after deciding it would be too difficult to raise a family and pursue other goals during his career.

He later joined the Christian group, Acappella, as a background vocalist for a one-year tour, as well as contributed guest vocals on other projects and competed on reality singing shows “Gospel Dream” and “Nashville Star.”

Despite the band’s split, all members still stay in touch, recently getting together for a reunion charity concert. Gillilan said he hopes the band will work on a new project in the future.

2. He used to work in a haunted attraction.

From 2004 to 2008 and during 2014, Gillilan worked as an actor at the Atrox Factory in Birmingham.

He said he chose to be a part of the attraction because of his love of horror and haunted attractions, as well as most of the site’s proceeds going toward charity organizations.

The characters he portrayed include a butcher, mad scientist, zombie, zombie-fighting deputy and Freddy Krueger. Gillilan said his favorite part of the job was getting to have fun acting and scare customers who share his love for haunted attractions.

3. He makes puppets and ventriloquist dummies.

Gillilan has created over 20 dummies and puppets overall, keeping some and selling others on eBay. The soft puppets he makes are available for donation or purchase by church puppet ministries.

Gillilan said he started making them because of his admiration for ventriloquist and comedian Jeff Dunham. However, he said while he does perform with the puppets sometimes, he likes making them more.

Besides this hobby, Gillilan also creates masks and props, which sell on eBay, as well.

4. He creates different types of art.

Gillilan said he has loved being artistic since his childhood. His creations include wall murals, sports prints, portraits and spray-paint art. He said his favorite subjects are superheroes, college football scenes and classic horror paintings.

He also owns tattoo equipment, which he uses on practice pads since he is not a licensed tattoo artist, and has operated a sign company.

His artistic career has been further shown in UNA’s Guillot University Center as he has made signs for the Career Center, Transportation Services, University Events, Student Engagement and Veterans Affairs. He is also the artist behind UNA police’s current patch, badge and police car graphics.

5. Chief Gillilan is also Dr. Gillilan.

In September 2017, Gillilan obtained his doctorate degree in criminal justice and emergency management through Northcentral University in Arizona, having begun his undergraduate work in 2008.

He said he chose to pursue his doctorate to learn everything he could about his profession, and this degree will provide many future opportunities for him because of its rare obtainment in his field.

His name is also on the list to attend the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va. He said this is a highly regarded program that invites very few officers.