River Cities

Miami Springs picks Guzman as new police chief

New Miami Springs Police Chief Armando A. Guzman
New Miami Springs Police Chief Armando A. Guzman

Armando Guzman has been named as the new police chief for Miami Springs.

Guzman, who currently serves as the public safety chief at Miami Dade College’s Kendall campus, has more than 30 years of police experience.

“I’m convinced that each of the four candidates recommended by the chief’s panel would do a superb job as our chief,” wrote City Manager Ron Gorland in a Wednesday afternoon email to the Miami Herald.

The other finalists included: Rafael P. Hernandez, an investigator with the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office; Thomas W. Cannon, a former Miami assistant police chief; and Van Toth, the current Hialeah Gardens police chief.

City officials spent months weeding through 97 applicants which included current and former police officials, federal agents and security consultants.

Gorland was charged with making the final decision.

“My job was to select the best match for our community for at least the next five to seven years,” Gorland said.

Gorland gave weight to a reference by former Miami Police Chief John Timoney, who wrote:

“He [Guzman] will make an excellent chief and you will do yourself and the citizens of Miami Springs proud by choosing him to lead your department into the future.”

“I am anxious to meet with as many residents as possible and let them know that I will make myself accessible and accountable to them,” said Guzman.

The chief’s salary will start at up to $114,406 a year, plus benefits, according to the city. This position is responsible for leading a department with 42 officers and a budget of nearly $6 million.

Guzman will start in his new position Jan. 5.