Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Rutherford Posts a Farewell Message

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Rutherford Posts a Farewell Message

Article excerpt

Byline: Joe Daraskevich

Jacksonville Sheriff John Rutherford will retire from his current position at the end of this month and pass his duties over to Sheriff-elect Mike Williams July 1. Rutherford spent 12 years leading the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office but had to leave that position because of a term limit in Duval County. Here are some excerpts from a letter Rutherford wrote to the city of Jacksonville that was posted on the Sheriff's Office website Friday:

"In the past 12 years I have been honored to serve this great city as its elected Sheriff. Despite all the challenges, and the constant state of change, I have never had one single day where I didn't spend time in quiet reflection about the awesomeness of the responsibility I had been given, and prayerfully thank God for the opportunity to be of service.

"Despite the many challenges we have faced both as an agency and a city, I never found this job to be a burden or a drudge. Actually, I found (and still find) every day to bring promise ... the chance to make a difference, improve someone's situation, and hopefully impact (for the good) on our quality of life."

Rutherford went on to talk about his faith and making compromises

"I am, for those of you who don't know me, a man of faith. I proudly call myself a Christian, and despite all the criticism and 'sideways looks' that it sometimes evokes, I do believe that this is the foundation upon which all my beliefs and principles are based.

"Making hard decisions isn't necessarily difficult for me. I was expertly trained as a law enforcement professional, and for the past 40 years have honed those skills. I have always strived to respect others and take into account that in all transactions I am dealing with people who may have a different perspective, belief, or history than I did. But that doesn't mean that we were necessarily at cross-purposes. I find that the best solutions are often compromises where both parties give a bit, and that keeping your word is more important than being right. Some of these beliefs I've always had and some have crystallized as these past 12 years have unfolded. …

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