Buzz: Simmons headed to ECSO, Alexander fights to keep job

Escambia County Assistant County Administrator Chip Simmons will leaving the county to work for Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan, according to sources close to both agencies.

Simmons retired as Pensacola Police Chief in August 2015 after 29 years of service. He rose through the ranks to assistant chief in January 2005. He was named interim chief when Chief John Mathis retired in 2010. Mayor Ashton Hayward appointed Simmons chief the following year. While with the county, Simmons has supervised the county jail operations after a series of jail deaths led to the firing of Corrections Director Michael Tidwell.

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Also, City Hall sources have shared that Pensacola Police Chief David Alexander has been told by Mayor Ashton Hayward that his last day as chief will be in May 2017. Alexander has begun to solicit support from ministers in the African-American community to lobby the mayor to keep him as chief. A Facebook page was created last week- Thank you, Chief David Alexander, III.

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4 thoughts on “Buzz: Simmons headed to ECSO, Alexander fights to keep job

  1. If Alexander is in the DROP and has to retire in May then that would seem a personnel action that is going to take place no matter what and there is nothing he or Hayward or anyone else can do. When Alexander took the job in 2015 he told a mutual friend that he was retiring in 2017. There hardly seems any “news” here and certainly nothing to “fight” about. On the Facebook page mentioned here, Alexander dismissed a rumor that he was retiring in January. Obviously, Assistant Chief Tommi Lyter is going to become the Police Chief. That has been the plan since 2015. Lyter has a house in Pace but has rented a place in the city. The more interesting news is Chip Simmons new position with the Sheriff’s Office. I was told by someone very familiar with the inner workings of Escambia County that Sheriff Morgan is positioning Simmons to be elected Sheriff in 2020.

  2. RTFP,
    That’s how I see it, too. Once Alexander completes DROP, he can’t stay in PPD. It would take a legislative act for him to stay on as police chief.

    -Rick

  3. Unlike the general pension plan that was amended to allow Barker and his gang to stay past their DROP . I don’t think that there is anything like this written in the police or fire plan. When David signed up for the DROP, he signed an irrevocable contract. Look it up city ordinances on city website under DROP.

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