New Smyrna Beach to hire Mike Coffin as its next top cop

Mike Coffin to be new chief of police in New Smyrna Beach / Headline Surfer®Photo for Headline Surfer® / 
Mike Coffin is expected to take over as police chief in New Smyrna Beach on March 9.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. -- On Tuesday, municipl leaders will take formal action to confirm 54-year-old Mike Coffin as the city’s top cop, is a forgone conlusion since he's the hand-picked choice of the city manager.

He also was the strongesst candidate ranked informally by Mayor Jim Hathaway. 

"I like his experience and his appraoch to policing -- his no-nonsense approach to serving the public," Hathaway told Headline Surfer®.

City Manager Pam Brangaccio readily agreed, telling the internet newspaper, “Hands down, Mike is a good fit for this position."

Brangaccio added, “He is known for a commitment to community-oriented policing and an open door policy for residents. He is also mindful of the trust and credibility required of the police chief, by City leadership and our community.”

Coffin is well known around Volusia County. Currently as chief deputy, he is second in command to Volusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson. He began his law enforcement career at the Sheriff’s Office in 1987. He also served as Volusia County Public Protection director from 2009-2011, reporting to the county manager and overseeing Fire Services, Corrections, Emergency Management, Beach Safety, Medical Examiner, Animal Control, EMS, and Emergency Medical Transport.

“I love New Smyrna Beach – everything about it,” Coffin said. “The City has a cohesive team among its commission and city staff, and the police department is in good shape. It’s exactly what I’m looking for in terms of my career.” T

he new chief has shown commitment to diversity, Brangaccio added. At the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, he has championed programs to sponsor minority candidates at the law enforcement academy. He also worked closely with minority communities throughout the County.

“His professional demeanor commands respect and will position him as a mentor and leader for both new and seasoned police officers,” Brangaccio added. “Mike is intelligent, passionate about law enforcement and has excellent relationships with local, state and federal agencies with which our officers interact daily.”

A veteran who served in the U.S. Coast Guard, Coffin has earned a Master of Homeland Security and Defense degree with honors and a Master of Forensic Science degree with honors, along with a Bachelor of Organizational  Management degree.

Coffin also is active in the community by serving on the Board of Directors for the West Volusia Police Athletic League, United Way of Volusia/Flagler and the Rotary Club of Downtown DeLand. Even though he grew up in DeLand, Coffin is no stranger to New Smyrna. He lived in the city while serving in the U.S. Coast Guard and is enthusiastic about moving back to the area where he learned to surf and fish.

“I’ve always had a connection to New Smyrna Beach,” Coffin added. “I’m looking for this to be my last (career) stop.”

“I’ve always had a connection to New Smyrna Beach,” Coffin added. “I’m looking for this to be my last (career) stop.”

Coffin will earn $105,000 annually. His first day on the job would be the first week of March – days after the department is expected to earn accreditation from the Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation.

“Our police department will be well positioned to move forward with Mike leading a newly accredited agency,” Brangaccio added. “We’re excited about the commitment, knowledge, loyalty, enthusiasm and ideas he will bring not only to the agency but also to the community.”

When Coffin takes over on March 9, Interim Police Chief Donna Lavallee will return to her previous rank as lieutenant and the No. administrator in the police force.

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Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.