The City of Coral Gables held a Swearing-in Ceremony for newly appointed Police Chief Edward J. Hudak, Jr. on Friday, Oct. 16, in the Donna E. Shalala Student Center Grand Ballroom. The hour-long ceremony consisted of an invocation from former pastor of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Coral Gables, Arnold Perry, oath remarks from City Manager Cathy Swanson-Rivenbark and remarks from the appointed chief himself, Edward J. Hudak, Jr. The event was led by the master of ceremonies, Pam Giganti, an NBC 6 news anchor and longtime friend of Hudak.
Hudak has been at CGPD since 1988 and was interim police chief for the last year before being given the permanent title in September. He has undergraduate and masters degrees from the University of Miami.
Giganti began the ceremony with a string of anecdotes detailing the various situations in which she would find herself asking, “what does Ed have to say?” The presentation of colors was then led by Sergeant Maurice Sikes and followed by both the National Anthem and the Pledge of Allegiance.
Swanson-Rivenbark spoke about the many departments of Coral Gables and their accomplishments in the past 90 years, since the city’s creation.
“Each department, well represented, will take a quiet oath along with Chief Hudak,” she said.
As Hudak came up to take his oath into office, he was accompanied by his wife, Mrs. Alina Hudak, and his two daughters, Kristina Hudak and Jennifer Hudak, for the pinning of the badge.
Due to an emergency, guest speaker James K. Loftus was unable to attend the ceremony. In his place was Florida state attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle. Rundle spoke of the many attributes and accomplishments of Hudak throughout both his time as a student at at the UM and in his career in law enforcement for the City of Coral Gables.
Rundle said Hudak had three values in his life, “his family, the City of Coral Gables, and The University of Miami.”
Afterwards, Hudak came up to give his remarks. He spoke of his time at UM and how the school kept him here in Coral Gables, a city that eventually became his new home. Originally from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, Hudak talked about coming from a European immigrant family and how being married to a Cuban influenced his life.
Hudak commented on the recent Black Lives Matter movement and stated that although black lives do in fact matter, so do “blue lives;” the lives of law enforcement. Chief Hudak understands the problems facing the department and pledges to be “the same Ed Hudak he always was.”