Noelle Smiley has taken the helm as assistant chief of the Irvine Police Department, following the promotion of recently sworn-in Chief Michael Kent, who previously held the role. Smiley most recently served three years as commander, overseeing general investigations, special investigations, business services and public information for the department. Smiley has enjoyed a decorated career since joining the department in 2000, including a Meritorious Service Award and a Community Service Award. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s in criminology, law and society from UC Irvine. Irvine’s modern police department is one reason it has been ranked America’s safest city for 16 consecutive years.