Kent Stermon: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

kent stermon

LinkedIn Kent Stermon

Kent Stermon was a Florida businessman who had ties to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who was found dead in Mayport, near Jacksonville, on December 8, 2022, WJAX reports.

Florida described Stermon as “one of the most connected political figures in Northeast Florida.”

Stermon, 50, died by suicide, the Atlantic Beach Police Department told First Coast News., which referred to him as a “prominent local political donor.”

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Kent Stermon Was Found Dead in a Vehicle

According to ActionNewsJax, Stermon “was found dead in a vehicle outside the U.S. Post Office in Atlantic Beach.”

His body was discovered around 8 p.m. on December 8, 2022, on Mayport Road “when an employee leaving the post office discovered a man alone in a locked vehicle,” the site reported.

He had been reported missing, the death was considered a suicide, and no foul play was suspected, ActionNewsJax reported.

2. Stermon, Who Was Married With Kids, Ran a Company That Serves ‘the Military Marketplace’

Stermon was president of a company that “enables Department of Defense transportation service providers to better serve the military marketplace,” according to its LinkedIn page.

TMM Inc. wrote on LinkedIn:

It is with great sadness that we share the passing of our President and COO, Kent Stermon.

Kent was a beloved husband and father, and a dedicated leader, mentor and friend. One of TMM’s five original employees, Kent has been integral in the growth and development of TMM over the past 18 years. Kent’s passion for serving TMM’s employees and customers through a culture of care is a core value of our organization.

Kent has been with the company since 2004 and will be deeply missed.

The State University System of Florida wrote in a bio for him:

Kent Stermon, of Jacksonville, is the President of Total Military Management. He has served on several nonprofit boards including Boys and Girls Club, Dreams Come True and NFCA of Northeast Florida. He is an ardent supporter of law enforcement and has been named Citizen of the Year by both Duval and Saint John’s County Sheriff’s Office for his philanthropic efforts supporting law enforcement. He currently serves on the Florida Highway Patrol Advisory Council and was chair of the Governor’s Public Safety Transition Advisory Committee.

In 2011, he was named the Ultimate CEO by Jacksonville Business Journal and was recognized as a member of their 40 Under 40 list. He received his bachelor’s degree in Finance from Georgia State University.

3. Stermon Was Under Investigation for ‘Sexual Misconduct’ Accusations & Had an Access Key to the Sheriff’s Office That Was Investigating Him

According to News4Jax, Stermon was under an active investigation for “sexual misconduct” accusations when he died. The details of those allegations are not known.

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office told the television station that the Stermon investigation was an “active investigation” and began “a few weeks before his death.”

“This investigation remains ongoing at this time and will continue until its completion. As with all active investigations, there is limited information available to release at this time. However, as soon as this investigation has been completed, all applicable information will be available for release to the public,” Jacksonville Sheriff T.K. Waters told News4JAX.

According to News4JAX, “The I-TEAM has since confirmed that Stermon, who was not employed by the Sheriff’s Office, was given an access card to JSO headquarters for the past five years — at the same time, he was donating thousands to GOP candidates, including former Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams. According to a log from JSO obtained by the I-TEAM, Stermon’s access card stopped being used just a few weeks before his death.”

The news station reported that Stermon swiped into the sheriff’s office hundreds of times between 2017 until November 15, 2022, including 87 times in 2022. He accessed the office during the tenures of Sheriff Mike Williams and interim Sheriff Pat Ivey, the news station reported, but did not enter the building using an access card under current Waters, who was sworn in as sheriff on November 10, 2022, WJAX reports.

4. Stermon Had Recently Suffered a Stroke

According to Florida Politics, Stermon had been dealing with health issues. Just hours before his death, he told the site that he had suffered a stroke that week.

However, Florida Politics reported that Stermon was “upbeat.”

“I am stepping about as far from politics as I can right now,” Stermon texted to the site. “My prognosis is positive and I just got discharged from hospital, but I have a ton of work to do to get healthy.”

First Coast News reported that Stermon was close to law enforcement agencies in Florida, being named citizen of the year by several.

5. Stermon Had Ties to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis & Jacksonville Mayor Lenny CUrry

Executive Office of the Governor, State of FloridaRon DeSantis and wife Jill Casey Black DeSantis.

Florida Politics wrote that Stermon had deep ties to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and other state and local GOP politicians.

“Stermon had a unique role in regional politics, making connections particularly for Ron DeSantis’ once-unlikely path to the 2018 Republican nomination for Governor,” the site wrote.

Taryn Fenske, DeSantis’ communications director, gave the site this statement from DeSantis:

“The Governor and First Lady were shocked and saddened to hear of Kent’s passing, and their prayers (and our entire office’s prayers) are with his family during this difficult time.”

According to Florida Politics, Stermon “rented a home to DeSantis while he was in Congress” and “helped build a bridge to the Northeast Florida establishment in both fundraising and endorsements.”

Stermon “was appointed to the Florida Board of Governors by DeSantis in 2019,” according to First Coast News, which obtained this statement from the Board:

We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Governor Kent Stermon. For the last three years, Kent has served on this board with distinction. He has been a champion of higher education and student success in Florida and a long-time supporter of the University of North Florida in many ways throughout the years. The Board of Governors sends its heartfelt condolences to Kent’s family during this difficult time.

According to WJAX, Stermon also had ties to Republican Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry.

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