West Yorkshire Police Chief Constable Sir Norman Bettison will remain in the post until at least 2014, after his contract was extended by three years.
The county's police authority said it wanted to ensure "continuity of leadership" during the implementation of government cuts.
Sir Norman, who joined the police force nearly 40 years ago, was appointed chief constable in 2007.
His contract was due to end in 2011. He said he was "delighted to be staying".
Councillor Mark Burns-Williamson, who chairs the West Yorkshire Police Authority, said: "It is vital we retain the expertise we have to get through the challenging times ahead."
Sir Norman said: "I am proud to lead West Yorkshire Police. I still love the job, the people and the challenge."
The government announced in last week's Spending Review it will cut police funding by 4% a year over the next four years.