Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo is making an unexpected move to the Sunshine State.
After serving as Houston's police chief for five years, Acevedo is leaving the fourth-largest police department in the country to become the new chief of police in Miami.
The police chief became a nationally-recognized figure last year when he marched with police reform protestors following George Floyd's death in Minneapolis. He has also been outspoken in calling for gun control and criticizing former President Donald Trump.
Acevedo was formally introduced by Miami city leaders, including City Manager Art Noriega and Mayor Francis Suarez, at a news conference Monday.
The new police chief said he's looking forward to leading the city as a man of faith who is not afraid to speak up for what is right and wrong.
“I piss off the left and the right," Acevedo said. “But service is in my heart and making a difference is in my heart."
He also spoke on the importance of acknowledging and processing the "pain of communities of color that disproportionately are impacted by bad policing."
“Our communities are watching us as leaders not just for what we say and do, but for what we fail to say and do," Acevedo said.
The 56-year-old chief said he wasn't looking for the opportunity when it originally became available but decided now that the time was right.
CBS Miami reporter Jim DeFede says Miami Mayor Francis Suarez called Acevedo the "Michael Jordan of police chiefs."
Acevedo, who was born in Cuba, came to the U.S. when he was 4 years old, according to the Houston Police Department website. He grew up in California and stayed to go to college at the University of La Verne, where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Public Administration.
According to his online bio, Acevedo’s first job in law enforcement was with the California Highway Patrol as a field patrol officer in East Los Angeles. He worked his way up to Chief of the California Highway Patrol in 2005. He later served as Austin’s police chief, where he stayed for more than nine years before coming to Houston.
You can watch the full announcement below.
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