As a kid growing up in Little Havana just down the street from the Orange Bowl, Rodolfo Llanes used to dream about being a Miami cop.

He entered the Police Explorers program at 14, became a public service aide after graduating from Miami Senior High, and then nabbed a spot on the force as a patrol officer. After that, he set a new goal: to become chief.

On Monday, after 27 years climbing the ladder, Llanes got his wish. City Manager Daniel Alfonso picked the department lifer and assistant chief to lead the city’s high-profile, 1,150-member department, starting next month, the Miami Herald reports.