Maine police chiefs: Yarmouth's Morrill sets the bar

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YARMOUTH — Police Chief Michael Morrill has been named Chief of the Year by the Maine Chiefs of Police Association.

Morrill said he was surprised by the recognition at the annual awards banquet held Feb. 5 in South Portland.

“I had no idea,” he said Monday.

Morrill, who has been Yarmouth’s chief since 2002 and has been with the department since 1977, said his first thought was “why me?”

According to a letter from MCOPA’s president, Bath Police Chief Michael Field, and the awards committee chairman, Saco Police Chief Bradley Paul, Morrill was chosen for his involvement with MCOPA.

“Although you are a consummate team player, your natural ability to lead others has resulted in you assuming several leadership positions for the Maine Chiefs,” the letter said.

Morrill is a member of the association board of directors, and has served on several committees since joining the association in 1992. He is also on the awards committee, and despite this, he said he truly didn’t know he was receiving the chief of the year award.

The letter from Field and Bradley also acknowledged Morrill’s long career in Yarmouth.

“As living proof that hard work and innate ability are character traits that matter, you have steadily worked your way up through the ranks of your chosen agency,” the letter said.

Morrill said Yarmouth is a great town to serve.

“I love the community,” he said. “Not only do I work here, I live here.”

Working with the other Yarmouth police officers makes the job very enjoyable, Morrill said.

“I feel that I’m truly blessed working for this organization with my fellow employees,” he said. “We make a great team.”

The letter from Field and Bradley said the way Morrill works with others demonstrates his ability as a leader.

“Within the town of Yarmouth you are known as a visionary leader, motivating others to succeed through inclusiveness, accountability, compassion, integrity, and a commitment to serve that is modeled by you on a daily basis,” the letter said.

Morrill said working with his staff and town staff are two of the best aspects of being chief. 

“One of my favorite parts (of being chief) are the people I work with,” he said. “That’s why after 38 years I still enjoy coming to work every day.”

Kate Gardner can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or kgardner@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @katevgardner.

Yarmouth Police Chief Michael Morrill, center, on Feb. 5 was named Maine Police Chief of the Year by the Maine Chiefs of Police Association.

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I'm a reporter for The Forecaster covering Freeport, Yarmouth, Chebeague Island, and Cape Elizabeth. I'm from a small town in NH no one's ever heard of. When not reporting, I can be found eating pasta and reading books, often at the same time.