SARASOTA — Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office Community Affairs Director Kaitlyn Perez was recognized for a 40 under 40 award.
Perez was named an International Association of Chiefs of Police and T-Mobile’s 40 Under 40 honoree.
The award highlights law enforcement professionals from around the world who demonstrate leadership, commitment to their profession, and have a positive impact on their communities and the field of policing, according to a news release.
She is one of two honorees from Florida and is joined by other law enforcement professionals from other countries, including Canada, Dubai and Australia.
“Now more than ever in our profession, law enforcement agencies must develop meaningful relationships with the communities they serve,” said Sheriff Kurt Hoffman.
“Director Perez’s work to connect the men and women of our agency to the citizens we serve plays a vital role in our future success. Through her efforts, she has advanced our mission of professional policing and community outreach, and I am extremely pleased that the IACP has recognized her hard work with this award.”
Perez has been with the agency since 2014 and originally started as a media relations specialist. She was promoted to community affairs director in 2016.
In her current role, Perez is a part of Hoffman’s senior staff and leads a team of four communications professionals, a release stated.
In 2021, Perez helped with the agency’s strategic planning process, launched the 10-8 TV social media series, and oversaw a recruitment project.
She also created campaigns on how the sheriff’s office serves vulnerable populations and responds to calls involving mental health, a news release stated.
Last year, Perez helped with getting a deputy’s family out of Afghanistan after the Taliban took over again. The deputy was born in Afghanistan and served as a combat linguist.
With Perez’s support, 32 of his family members made it to the U.S., where they found housing, jobs and school enrollment for the children, a release stated.
She also serves on the board of directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties.
“Director Perez’s passions lie in supporting Sarasota County’s youth and connecting citizens with the law enforcement professionals who serve them,” a release stated.