NEWS RELEASE 19-186 - NOVEMBER 14, 2019
From left: Colonel Kurt A. Hoffman, Sergeant Kyle Pfender, Sergeant Richard Hardin,
Sergeant Ben Lubrano, Lieutenant Brian James and Sheriff Tom Knight.
Sarasota County Sheriff Tom Knight is pleased to announce the promotion of four Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office members.
Detective Kyle Pfender is promoted to the rank of Sergeant assigned to the Law Enforcement Division. Pfender earned his law enforcement certification in 2010 and was hired by the sheriff’s office in 2011. Over the course of his career, Pfender worked in the agency’s Patrol Bureau, Tactical Unit and Special Investigations Section, currently serving as a member of the SWAT Team. He has been nominated for Employee of the Month twice and most recently received the Meritorious Achievement Award and the Congressional Law Enforcement Unit Citation Award. Pfender has advanced certifications in narcotics and dangerous drugs, investigative interviewing, tactical team leader development, firearm instruction and more. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Florida State University.
Detective Richard Hardin is promoted to the rank of Sergeant assigned to the Law Enforcement Division. Hardin served in the U.S. Army from 1986 to 1990 and received an Army Service Ribbon, Army Good Conduct Medal, Army Achievement Medal and Overseas Service Ribbon. He was hired by the sheriff’s office in 2008 and earned his corrections certification later the same year. In 2011, Hardin became cross-certified in law enforcement. He began working as a patrol deputy in 2012 and joined the Criminal Investigations Section as a detective in 2015. Hardin was awarded Employee of the Month twice and received six additional nominations throughout his career. In 2017, he was also nominated for Deputy of the Year. Hardin earned college credits through the State College of Florida and has advanced training in crisis intervention as well as case preparation and courtroom testimony.
Detective Ben Lubrano is promoted to the rank of Sergeant assigned to the Law Enforcement Division. Lubrano earned his law enforcement certification in 2011 and joined the sheriff’s office as a patrol deputy in 2012. He transferred to the Criminal Investigations Section in 2014 where he has since served as a detective. Over the course of his career, Lubrano was nominated for Deputy of the Year twice and Employee of the Month five times. In 2018, he was awarded both Employee of the Month and Deputy of the Year in recognition of his role in several significant investigations including the homicide of Deborah Dalzell. Most recently, Lubrano was recognized with the Law Enforcement Commendation Medal from the Sons of the American Revolution and the Congressional Law Enforcement Award for Dedication and Professionalism. He earned college credits through the State College of Florida.
Sergeant Brian James is promoted to the rank of Lieutenant assigned to the Law Enforcement Division. James began his law enforcement career in 2003 with the Virginia Beach Police Department before joining Sarasota County as a patrol deputy in 2009. He served as a field training officer and SWAT Team member before promoting to the rank of Sergeant in 2015. Throughout his career, James has received three nominations for Employee of the Month and earned the Heroic Achievement Award. He is a graduate of the Force Science Institute and the sheriff’s office leadership academy. James earned two associate’s degrees from West Virginia Junior College and his bachelor’s degree from American Public University.
“This is a great day for the sheriff’s office family,” said Sheriff Tom Knight. “These four members are an exceptional representation of our agency and of law enforcement in general. I am certain they will continue to be excellent leaders for their colleagues and their community.”