[PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher Photography, Inc.]
[Original Publish Date: 03/10/21]
LEESBURG, Florida — History was made Wednesday as longtime Lake County Sheriff’s deputy Christie Mysinger was appointed as the first-ever female captain at LCSO at a ceremony at Leesburg High School.
LCSO Sheriff Peyton Grinnell is the first sheriff to appoint a woman to his command staff.
“It’s history in the making, “ Grinnell told Lake Legal News. He said he chose Mysinger for a number of reasons, including her college education and her ability to think outside the box.
“She has excelled in everything she has been assigned to,” he said. “She thinks outside the box, she doesn’t hesitate; that’s important to me because I learn from my employees.” He noted how well she supervised the school resource unit and how important school safety is, along with forging into the unknown with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mysinger, a 30-year veteran, rose through the ranks in her career, starting at LCSO when she was just 20 years old. At 20, Mysinger looked so young, someone once reported her to LCSO for driving her “dad’s patrol car,” she remembers with a laugh.
Becoming a captain was one of Mysinger’s goals from the start of her career and being appointed the first female was something she never envisioned.
“It is both an honor and a huge responsibility. Not only am I being given the opportunity to forge a new path, but I also have the responsibility of being a role model for the many young women who are just beginning their careers in law enforcement.”
Mysinger has served in numerous different capacities at LCSO, including road patrol, field training officer, mounted patrol, community services, public information officer, DARE and most recently as lieutenant in the school resource unit — her third time in the unit. She served first as a deputy, later as a sergeant and finally as lieutenant.
“Every time I came back to the unit, I was a higher rank,” Mysinger told LLN earlier this week.”
Mysinger will now serve as captain over support services, emergency management bureau, aviation and communications.
Grinnelll gave a small speech to his deputies and attendees and said how blessed they are to work in Lake County — a county that is so supportive of law enforcement. He thanked all of his deputies for “holding the ‘thin blue line,’” and said, “All of you make me look good.”
Mysinger was joined by 21 other deputies who were also promoted Wednesday, Todd English and Skott Jensen were appointed to major; Russ Edwards, Michael Marden, Mysinger and Shawn Vance were appointed to captain; Cameron Crews, Fred Jones, Tim O’Brien and Bill Reed were promoted to lieutenant; Tim Beary, Sandi Chessher, Jasen McCormick and Billy Walls were promoted to sergeant and Brandon Barnard, Joe Brocato, Austin Chandler, Richard Dolen, Adam Kelly, Charles Pendergrass, Todd Rowley and Jarrod Strickland were promoted to corporal. Captain positions and above are appointed by the sheriff, lieutenant positions and below are earned through testing and an interview.
Major Chris DeLibro announced each deputy’s name and they walked across the stage to get their certificate and pose for a photo with Grinnell. Newly-promoted Lt. Fred Jones stopped in the middle of the stage, pointed out towards the crowd and yelled, “I love you, mama,” which drew cheers and applause from the audience and it was an extra special day for newly-appointed Capt. Michael Marden, Wednesday was also his birthday and DeLibro led the audience in a rendition of the “Happy Birthday” song.
Our Editor-in-Chief, Marilyn M. Aciego, began writing for Lake Legal News in 2010. Born and raised in Lake County, she is a graduate of Umatilla High School and Lake-Sumter State College. She started her journalism career at LSSC, where she was editor of both student publications, The Angler and The Odyssey. Her professional career began at the Daily Commercial in 2004 where she covered cops and courts the majority of her time there until she left in 2009. Currently, along with being Editor-in-Chief of Lake Legal News, she is the Florida bureau chief for an international media organization. She has made more than two dozen appearances on live national television, including Nancy Grace and the Greta Van Susteren show, along with her appearance on Evil Twins. Contact her with breaking news, tips, and feedback by sending an e-mail to 352Tips@gmail.com. You can also contact us on our Facebook page — and make sure you “Like” and “Follow us” there. [PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher]