News


Five Law Enforcement Officers inducted into Hall of Fame

5/20/2017
 

For Immediate Release

May 20, 2016

 
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –Current and former law enforcement officers from throughout Florida were honored Saturday at Florida’s second annual Law Enforcement Officers’ Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.   FDLE Commissioner Rick Swearingen presided over the ceremony held inside Florida’s Capitol.
 
The inductees were nominated by the Florida Sheriffs Association, Florida Police Chiefs Association, Police Benevolent Association, Fraternal Order of Police and the State Law Enforcement Chiefs’ Association and then were selected by a committee.  The inductees were approved by Governor Rick Scott and Florida’s Cabinet. 
 
Richard M. Beary, University of Central Florida Chief of Police
Richard M. Beary has served more than 39 years in state and local law enforcement agencies. He began his career in 1977 with the Altamonte Springs Police Department, and in 1992 was named chief of police for Lake Mary Police Department, where he remained until he retired in June 2007. Immediately following his retirement, he was named chief of police for the University of Central Florida, where he is still actively serving. He has served as president for the Florida Police Chiefs Association and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP). He has provided testimony before Congress, the Florida Legislature, and the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing. His tenure as IACP president (2014-2015) was among the most challenging in the history of the organization as law enforcement faced immense scrutiny from federal and state governments, as well as the public, for a number of high profile use of force incidents. As IACP president, he passionately defended the profession and brought attention to law enforcement’s successes and complex challenges.
 
William B. Berger, former chief of police for North Miami Beach and Palm Bay Police Departments, current U.S. Marshal for the Middle District of Florida
William B. Berger has dedicated 42 years to public service and public safety. His career began in 1974 with the Miami Police Department, where he was instrumental in significantly increasing the number of robbery, homicide, and sexual battery cases solved during the turbulent 1980s. From 1989 to 2004, he served as chief of police for North Miami Beach Police Department. Under his leadership, North Miami Beach was recognized as one of the most technologically advanced police departments in the country. In 2004, he was named chief of police for Palm Bay Police Department, where he continued to create and implement new programs and use technology to enhance policing. He has served as president for the Florida Police Chiefs Association (FPCA) and the International Association of Chiefs of Police. On December 19, 2010, he was appointed by President Barack Obama as U.S. Marshal for the Middle District of Florida. He is a four time recipient of the prestigious FPCA Director’s Award, now referred to as the Law Enforcement Executive of the Year Award.
 
James T. Moore, former Commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement
James T. Moore began his career with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in 1973. He started in an entry-level position and worked his way through the ranks to ultimately be appointed as Commissioner in 1988 by Governor Bob Martinez and the Florida Cabinet. He served as Commissioner under two more governors until his retirement in 2003. During his tenure as Commissioner, his focus provided more effective service to local law enforcement agencies, brought technology enhancements to the departments forensic and information services divisions, and involved the public in the recovery of missing children and the identification of sexual offenders and predators. His concentration on executive development led to the establishment of the Florida Criminal Justice Executive Institute. Following the tragedy of September 11, 2001, his leadership led to the establishment of Florida’s domestic security infrastructure, which continues to provide a framework for managing and reducing potential threats to national and state security.
 
Neil J. Perry, former St. John’s County Sheriff
Neil J. Perry began his career as a reserve patrol officer with St. Augustine Police Department in 1968 prior to becoming a deputy sheriff with St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office in 1974. He was elected St. John’s County Sheriff in 1984 and re-elected for five additional terms until his retirement on December 31, 2004. He displayed commitment and devotion to the profession by serving as president of the Florida Sheriffs Association, chairman of the Florida Youth Ranches, chairman of the Commission on Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation, and chairman and co-founder of the Florida Criminal Justice Executive Institute. His commitment to create an accreditation program for Florida led to the establishment of an award named after him. In addition to his distinguished law enforcement career, he also served his country with the Florida National Guard, retiring as a colonel. Perry, who died in 2012, will be remembered for his visionary leadership and civic involvement.
 
J.M. “Buddy” Phillips, former Suwannee County Sheriff
J. M. “Buddy” Phillips served 45 years in law enforcement in Florida, beginning his career as a deputy sheriff with Suwannee County Sheriff’s Office in 1963. He was elected sheriff of Suwannee County in 1968, where he served one term before joining the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in 1973. At the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, he became the director of mutual aid, which is vital to Florida’s law enforcement community allowing sheriffs and chiefs to share resources and manpower across jurisdictions during emergency situations. In 1988, he was selected to be the executive director of the Florida Sheriffs Association, where he served through his retirement in March 2002. Due in part to his ability to bring stability to an agency, he was appointed by three different governors to serve as sheriff in Flagler, Glades, Columbia, Pasco, and Charlotte, and Lake counties between 1983 and 2004, and was the only person to serve as sheriff in seven different Florida counties.  Sheriff Phillips died in 2008 and will be remembered as “Florida’s Sheriff”.
 
The Florida Law Enforcement Officers’ Hall of Fame was created by the 2014 Florida Legislature to recognize and honor law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line for the safety and protection of Florida’s citizens and visitors through their works, service and exemplary accomplishments. 
 
For Further Information Contact:
Gretl Plessinger, Jessica Cary, Sterling Ivey
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001