In a ballroom packed with police officers, state and municipal leaders, Hialeah welcomed its new top cop Chief George Fuente on Thursday.
The 43-year-old husband and father spoke of growing up on the same streets he patrols, calling it “a new day and age in Hialeah.”
State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle administered the oath of office with Fuente’s wife and two young children by his side.
“It feels surreal,” he said, about the fact that he would lead the agency now, saying he dedicated his life to serving the city since he was 19.
Mayor Esteban “Steve” Bovo selected Fuente from 30 applicants which a city committee screened. Mayor Bovo announced the departure of previous Hialeah Chief Sergio Velazquez shortly after taking office last November.
At the time, Bovo named Fuente, a former deputy chief, to serve as interim chief until formally selecting him to take the top job.
Fuente said his goal is to “make Hialeah the safest city in the United States.”