SARASOTA, Fla. – City Manager Marlon Brown has announced the appointment of Capt. James Rieser as chief of police of the Sarasota Police Department.
With nearly 30 years of law enforcement experience, Rieser will serve as the City of Sarasota’s 12th police chief.
He will begin his new position at 5 p.m. Friday, Jan. 29.
“It’s an honor to promote and appoint Jim Rieser to become SPD’s 12th chief of police,” Brown said. “During his 29-year career with SPD, he has risen through the ranks from police officer 2nd class to sergeant, lieutenant and has been serving as captain for the past six years. He’s well-respected in the department and community and well-versed with SPD’s extensive policies and initiatives. He is prepared to step in as chief immediately and move the organization forward, strengthen trust between law enforcement and neighborhoods and lead SPD into a new technological realm with body worn cameras.
“Having spent most of his life in Sarasota and being a city resident, he is fully committed and dedicated to our community. Being the chief is a significant responsibility, and Jim Rieser will serve our community and the men and women of SPD well.”
Rieser joined the department in April 1992.
“I’ve worked alongside the men and women of the Sarasota Police Department since 1992 when I became a patrol officer to serve this amazing community,”
Rieser said. “I’m honored and humbled to have the privilege to be able to lead this agency moving forward. I am looking forward to continuing to partner with our community and working with our agency to keep the City of Sarasota a safe place to live, work, and play.”
Rieser has an extensive background in law enforcement and public safety. He attended the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) Senior Management Institute for Police, the Southern Police Institute (SPI) in Kentucky, and took line supervisor and middle management law enforcement classes at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE).
“With Jim Rieser’s appointment today this community can rest assured that public safety and police services will not skip a beat, and we are fortunate to have someone with his experience, character and integrity ready and willing to step up and serve in this new role as our next police chief,” said Mayor Hagen Brody.
Since joining the ranks of the department, he has served in the Patrol Division, Professional Standards Division, Narcotics and Criminal Investigations Division, and most recently was the commander of the Support Services Division. During his service, he’s been awarded a Life-Saving Medal, Distinguished Service Medal and Meritorious Service Medal, as well as several commendations.
Born in Oyster Bay, N.Y., Rieser has called Sarasota home since he was a young boy. He attended Wilkinson Elementary School, Brookside Middle School, Riverview High School and Manatee Community College and holds a bachelor’s degree in criminology from Saint Leo University.
Rieser and his wife live in Sarasota and are the proud parents of two children. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with family and playing tennis.