Rick Staly was sworn in today as Flagler County’s 18th sheriff before the Honorable Senior Judge Emerson R. Thompson Jr., during a special ceremony at the Sheriff’s Operations Center, while, earlier this week, Sheriff David Shoar was sworn in for his fourth consecutive term as St. Johns County’s Sheriff, before the Honorable Judge Charles Tinlin.
Among nearly 400 people attending Staly’s investiture were former sheriffs Don Fleming and James L. Manfre. The Coastal Florida Police and Fire Pipes & Drums corps and the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard participated in the ceremony. Staly was surrounded by friends, well-wishers, wife Debbie, daughters Lauren Staly, Diana Wolf, and their families. Also attending were elected officials from Flagler Beach, Palm Coast, Bunnell and Flagler County, as well as Staly’s former colleagues from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
Staly began his law enforcement career in 1975 as a police officer in Oviedo and later in Altamonte Springs. He went to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office where he served for 23 years until he retired in 2001. Staly served as the undersheriff of the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office from 2013-2014 and was elected sheriff November 8, 2016.
During Shoar’s investiture at the St Johns County Courthouse, he begins his fourth four-year term with a history lesson on the creation of the office of sheriff in Florida and how, at one time, St Johns was the larger of two counties in the state — the smaller being Escambia.
“To call historic St. Johns County my home, while serving in both law enforcement and military circles has been one of my life’s greatest experiences,” Shoar told a small group of friends and family.
During his 36-year career in law enforcement, Shoar was a police officer until he was appointed Chief of Police in the City of St Augustine by then city manager, William B Harriss. He was elected sheriff on the retirement of Sheriff Neil J Perry, and he has served 12-years as sheriff.
Shoar retired honorably from the Florida National Guard after 24 years of military service, where he served both in peacetime and during the first Gulf War.