Mayor Buddy Dyer swore in the new police chief of Orlando, Deputy Chief Orlando Rolon, a 25-year veteran of the Orlando Police Department, on Oct. 29 as the 39th chief of the agency. Rolan replaced Chief John Mina who is retiring in order to focus on becoming the Orange County sheriff. Mina’s retirement will be effective Dec. 1.
“I want to say thank you, Mayor Dyer, for this honor. I do not take this responsibility lightly,” said Chief Rolan at his Change of Command ceremony. He went on to say, “Commissioners, you have always made investing in public safety a top priority. Because of your commitment, our police officers are equipped with the best tools, training, and technology. As I have always done, I look forward to continuing to work with you in my new role. Thank you for the support you have given me and I look forward to working with you to keep our community safe.”
Chief Rolan is the first Hispanic police chief for the city, having been born in Puerto Rico. He went on to serve as a United States Marine and says that his diverse background and upbringing have helped to prepare him to take on this role. His father served in the Army and his brother in the Navy, and he grew up in a lower-middle-income household where his parents taught him “the importance of believing in a higher being and instilled the values of hard work, honesty, integrity, and treating everyone with dignity and respect.” He most recently served as a deputy chief, overseeing the patrol services division.
Rolan noted that his top priority is protecting children. He also hopes to find a way to provide better training and better mental health services for officers. This also included discussion of training for our officers specifically in areas including de-escalation and mass casualty incidents, given the aftermath of the PULSE tragedy. He hopes to help reduce Orlando’s rising crime rates with new crime prevention efforts.
Rolan said that his vision for the agency is to be a model for efficiency, effectiveness, professionalism, and collaboration. “I know, through the partnership with all of you … the safety of this Orlando community that we all love and call home … will be well in hand. And, together, we will continue to make the Orlando Police Department the best police department in the nation,” Rolan said.