MISSOURI CITY, Texas -

The Missouri City Police Department has a new leader. The city council announced Monday that former assistant chief of operations Mike Berezin has been named chief of police. The announcement came after a months-long search.

"Having been with the city for more than 25 years, I consider it an honor to work with my fellow Missouri City employees," Berezin said. "Council, for as long as I can remember, has always been supportive of my department, and I'm grateful to serve the city as police chief."

Berezin has been serving as interim police chief since January when the former chief of police, Joel Fitzgerald, left to serve as the head of the police department in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Berezin began his law-enforcement career with the Missouri City Police Department in January 1989 as a patrol officer. In 1990, Berezin was honored as "Officer of the Year" by the Fort Bend County 100 Club. The award was also bestowed on him in 2001 by the 100 Club of Greater Houston.

Berezin is a graduate of the Leadership Command College at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville. He also graduated from the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia.

"I am 100 percent looking forward to serving the city as the newest chief of police," Berezin said. "I hope to do bigger and better things than anyone in this city has ever seen."

Berezin will be officially sworn in as chief of police on Wednesday.