HARLINGEN — Miryam Anderson has made local history by becoming the first woman promoted to assistant chief within the Harlingen Police Department.
Yesterday, Anderson was surrounded by her family and fellow officers as she was promoted to the second highest position within the department.
Anderson joined the force in April 1997 and in the past 22 years she has moved up in the ranks from patrol officer, detective, sergeant, commander and most recently the first female deputy chief.
She has also undergone extensive training, including attending the FBI National Academy.
Anderson was born and raised in Brownsville, and attended Texas Southmost College. While at TSC, she decided to join the U.S. Army and during her time in the military was stationed in Korea and Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
After being discharged, Anderson applied to become an officer with the Harlingen Police Department.
In a 2017 story in our Valley Women Inspire magazine, Anderson said serving the community is the most wonderful thing in the world.
“I have learned that if we make our main focus in a field to remain in service to one another, everything falls into place and you will have all your emotional needs met,” she said.
She also recalled talking to a young mother she was arresting for drug activity and offering her advice.
“We try not to pass judgment … But we have a job to do. If I have the opportunity to change a life, I will try. We don’t always realize what our words mean,” she said.
Anderson said in 1997 her first police ID read — “patrol man.” Now it will read “assistant police chief.”