Public Information Officer
Twelve deputies took the next step up the career ladder Tuesday during the largest group promotion at the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office since 1997. Topping the list are the Sheriff’s Office’s two newest captains, Robert Matusick and Gordon Meyer. Between the two of them, they have more than 46 years of law enforcement experience. They’ll replace Jeanie Absher and Dave Hudson, two captains who Sheriff Ben Johnson said will leave some very big shoes to fill when they retire before the end of the year. However, Sheriff Johnson said the future of the Sheriff’s Office is in very good hands. “We’re very fortunate to have the depth that we do in the department,” Sheriff Johnson said Tuesday morning to a crowd of about 175 that turned out for the promotion ceremony at the Stephen Saboda Training Center in Datyona Beach. “The depth is one of the things that makes this department so strong.”
Two lieutenants and eight sergeants also joined Matusick and Meyer in earning promotion Tuesday. The 48-year-old Matusick started his career at the Sheriff’s Office in 1978 and has worked varied assignments that include road patrol, marine patrol, airport security and internal affairs. Matusick also is a crisis negotiator and helped start up the department’s crisis negotiations team and crisis intervention team. He’ll be reassigned from his current post supervising internal affairs to assume command of investigative services from Hudson. As commander of investigative services, Matusick will oversee a variety of specialized units housed at the agency’s Operations Center, including major case, narcotics, sex crimes, elder crimes, auto theft, career criminal, intelligence and crime analysis.
Meyer’s career at the Sheriff’s Office began in 1986 and has included stints in patrol, investigations, major case, internal affairs and court services. The 56-year-old Meyer, who also is a crime scene technician, currently serves as one of the agency’s two watch commanders. As captain, he’ll be reassigned to command the Sheriff’s Office’s Communications Center. Captain John Szaroleta, the current Communications Center commander, will head up the agency’s District 3 operations in Holly Hill following Absher’s retirement.
Meanwhile, moving up into the lieutenant positions vacated by Matusick and Meyer are Eric Dietrich and Cliff Williams. Both were promoted from the rank of sergeant on Tuesday. Dietrich, 34, has been with the Sheriff’s Office since 1994. As sergeant, Dietrich supervised the investigative staff at the District 2 office in DeLand. He’ll remain in the District 2 office as assistant district commander. The current assistant district commander, Lieutenant Jim Melady, is being transferred to internal affairs. Williams, 48, started with the Sheriff’s Office in 1989 and had been working as a road patrol supervisor. His new assignment will be as watch commander.
Calling first-line supervisors the most critical job in the department, Sheriff Johnson also promoted eight deputies to the rank of sergeant on Tuesday. The Sheriff encouraged the new sergeants to develop their own style of supervision and leadership, but urged them to be shaped by his basic philosophy. “Do the right thing for the right reason,” Sheriff Johnson told the group. “This is your department.” The eight new sergeants are: Brian Bosco, Cindy Gambrell, David Ingram, George Maddox, Mark Mathieson, Anthony Shank, Juan Santiago-Colon and James Crabtree. Tuesday’s 12 promotions were the most at one time since 17 deputies were promoted in a group ceremony in December 1997.
Administrative offices: West Volusia 386-736-5961 Daytona Beach 386-254-4689 New Smyrna Beach 386-423-3352
Non-emergency dispatch numbers: DeLand 386-943-8276 Daytona Beach 386-239-8276 New Smyrna Beach 386-409-8276 Osteen 407-323-0151