Citrus County Sheriff Office Leadership
Sheriff Mike Prendergast
Sheriff Mike Prendergast was elected Sheriff of Citrus County in November 2016. Prior to that time, he served as Executive Director of the Florida Department of Veterans' Affairs following his appointment by Gov. Rick Scott and the Cabinet on June 22, 2011. The Tampa native served 31 years of active duty service as a Military Police Officer, with multiple combat deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as assignments in Africa, Europe and Asia. He culminated his military service with a tour at MacDill Air Force Base where he served as the U.S. Central Command Provost Marshal. He retired from active duty on October 1, 2009.
Sheriff Prendergast, a graduate of Clearwater Central Catholic High School, served as Chief of Staff for Governor Rick Scott's administration from inauguration through the 2011 legislative session and until his appointment as FDVA Executive Director.
The Sheriff's civilian education includes a Bachelor of Arts degree with Special Honors and a dual major in Political Science and Sociology from Jacksonville State University, a Master of Arts degree with a major in International Relations and a Certificate in African Studies from the University of Florida, a Master of Public Administration degree with a concentration in Public Management from Troy University, and a Master of Strategic Studies degree from the U.S. Army War College.
His personal awards and decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, three Legion of Merit medals, the Bronze Star Medal, four Meritorious Service Medals, six Army Commendation Medals, and two Army Achievement Medals. Sheriff Prendergast is a 2009 inductee into the Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame at Fort Benning, Georgia, and is a recipient of the Military Police Corps' Order of the Marechaussee award in Silver for having had a significant impact on the Army's Military Police Corps.
In March 2018, Governor Rick Scott appointed Sheriff Prendergast to the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Information Systems Council.
The Sheriff and his wife, Naomi, have two grown children and five grand-children. The Prendergasts' son and son-in-law are both Operation Enduring Freedom combat veterans.
(As of March, 2018)