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A Message From
Former Sheriff Tom Knight

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As the son of a World War II Pacific theater war hero, a career law enforcement officer and Sarasota County’s Sheriff for 12 years, I have protected people and fought for what’s right my entire adult life. Now, I am fighting to make sure the families and businesses in my district are protected from the political establishment and deep-pocketed political operatives who don’t care about what we want, including representation from within our own community.

I am a 50-year resident of Venice and lifelong Republican with a track record of leadership and delivering results to the people I serve.  I hope you will look at my history, trust that I will continue to be my own man and join me in my latest fight—to keep special interests and hidden agendas out of Sarasota County district 3. Together, we will protect our community. 

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Tom Knight was the first Sheriff in Sarasota County to deport criminal illegal aliens from our community. 



  • Moved to Venice in 1973, graduate of Venice High School

  • 34 years in law enforcement with the Sarasota Police Department, Florida Highway Patrol and Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office

  • As Sheriff from 2009 through 2020:

    • Led an agency with 1,000 employees and a $121 million budget

    • Drove crime down in Sarasota County by more than 50 percent

    • Received a national ASTOR award for protecting children from online predators and human traffickers 

    • Managed costs and prevented the need for a $100M+ county bond for a new jail and administrative offices 

  • Named Republican Party of Sarasota County Elected Official of the Year, 2017

  • Member of Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody's Opioid Task Force

  • Member of Governor Rick Scott's Law and Order Transition Team

  • Named Florida Association of Counties Partner of the Year in 2013 for effectively fighting pill mills

  • Member of Leadership Florida’s 33rd class

  • Served countless local nonprofits as a board member, advocate and fundraiser 

  • Holds a bachelor’s degree from Florida State University and Graduate Certificate in Public Management from the University of South Florida

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