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Sarasota Police Chief To Retire

Sarasota Police Chief Mikel Hollaway will retire with the department in October after 30 years of service with the force and two years as chief.

Updated Tuesday 5:00 p.m.

Chief Mikel Hollaway will say goodbye to the Sarasota Police Department in October, two years after he took over the post and 30 years with the police force.

Interim County Manager Terry Lewis announced at Monday's city commissioner meeting that Hollaway, 52, tendered his resignation and he plans to retire in October. He could leave in August with the leave he has built up, but agreed to stay on longer, Lewis said.

Hollaway said Tuesday it's time for him to spend more time with his family, The Herald-Tribune reports:

"It's time for me personally to go," he said. "I didn't take the chief's job to stay here a very, very long time. I wanted to help this department during a trying time, and we've done that."

Hollaway currently earns about $132,000 per year, and is set to retire in October. Once retired, Hollaway said he hopes to travel and help with his wife's fledgling accounting business.

"I want to do all the things that I've procrastinated and not done over 30 years," he said. "I just want to enjoy life and travel a little bit."

Hollaway took over for former Chief Peter Abbott in October 2010 after he abruptly resigned following paying $400 to a man kicked by a police officer. 

He was born in St. Petersburg but grew up in north Sarasota attending , and .

The new selection will not be made by Lewis, but instead the , and Lewis encouraged the commissioners to start the process now to lessen the burden on the new manager. 

"When the new city manager comes in,  he or she will come in with a list of semi-finalists and they can finish out their process," Lewis said.

The commission is six to eight weeks away from selecting a new city manager, Lewis said.

"We can save two or three months by getting this prepared," he said.

The commission agreed to start the process and to require that the new chief will have to live in the city or relocate to the city if they are a local candidate.

"I think the city will demand that," Mayor Suzanne Atwell said about the chief living in city limits. 

Advertisements for the position will begin in June, Lewis said.

Lorena Rene L Francis May 22, 2012 at 02:07 PM
I am always glad when someone reaches retirement after they have put in their time and reached a stage in their life that it is somewhat of a reward,but I will be very sorry to see Chief Hollaway go. I have seen a lot of changes since he became chief and all for the good of Sarasota. I lived in a area of Sarasota with prostitution and drugs and when he became chief he really became involved with a show of force and there was a noticeable drop in the illicit activity. I thank him for the wonderful job he has done and wish him the best in his retirement. I can only hope Sarasota will find someone who is as dedicated and concerned about this city as he has been. Those will be big shoes to fill. Sincerely, Lorena Francis
Charles Schelle May 22, 2012 at 03:50 PM
Thanks Lorena for commenting!
Julia May 22, 2012 at 07:22 PM
I will also be sorry to see Chief Hollaway retire. I have planned many large demonstrations in Sarasota over the years and working with Mike was always a pleasure. Best to you Chief and enjoy your retirement. Julia Aires

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