Robert A. Hardwick, Sheriff
Robert A. Hardwick was elected as the 28th St. Johns County Sheriff in November of 2020 and officially took office on January 5, 2021. Prior to serving as Sheriff, he served as the 11th Chief of Police for the St. Augustine Beach Police Department from 2013-2020. He also served as the Assistant Chief Investigator with the Office of the State Attorney 7th Judicial Circuit from 2008-2013. During his nearly 30-year law enforcement career, Sheriff Hardwick also worked at the St. Augustine Police Department, the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and the Florida Department of Corrections.
As a veteran of the U.S. Army and Florida Army National Guard, Sheriff Hardwick has participated in multiple deployments to the Middle East in support of military operations. His deployments include as far back as Operation Desert Storm in 1990 with the 82nd Airborne Division and as recent as Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003 and 2004 with the 53rd Infantry Brigade supporting the 5th Special Forces Group. His most recent assignment was in the Florida Army National Guard as a Platoon Trainer (TAC) at the Camp Blanding Regional Training Institute’s Officer Candidate School (OCS). In 2018, after 25 years of active and national guard service, Sheriff Hardwick honorably retired.
Sheriff Hardwick has a Bachelor of Science Degree from Flagler College and a Master of Arts Degree from Barry University. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy-Session 247, the FBI’s Florida Executive Development Seminar-Class 16 and the FBI’s National Executive Institute-Class 44. Sheriff Hardwick is also a graduate of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Chief Executive Seminar-Session 48 and the National Sheriff’s Institute Leadership Course- Session 120.
In August of 2016, Governor Rick Scott appointed Sheriff Hardwick to the Criminal Justice and Standards Training Commission (CJSTC). He served as Chair for the Officer Discipline Penalty Guidelines Task Force and Chair for the Florida League of Cities’ Law Enforcement Advisory Panel, (LEAP). Sheriff Hardwick currently serves on the Region V Training Council, the St. Johns River State College Criminal Justice Academy Advisory Board, and as a Commissioner on the Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation (CFA). He also serves on the School Advisory Board for St. Joseph Academy Catholic High School and the Care Connect+ UF Health St. Johns Board. Sheriff Hardwick serves on the Florida Sheriff’s Association Legislative Committee, the Accreditation Advisory Committee and the Florida Model Jail Standards Working Group. Additionally, Speaker Paul Renner appointed Sheriff Hardwick to the Statewide Council on Opioid Abatement in July of 2023. Sheriff Hardwick continues to volunteer as a local youth coach.
Sheriff Hardwick has been married to his wife, Kendell, for 32 years and they have two adult sons.