The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office dedicated its headquarters Wednesday, naming the building after former sheriff and state legislator Malcolm Beard.
Sheriff David Gee dedicated the operations center in Ybor City during a morning ceremony attended by the 94-year-old Beard.
Speakers included former state Sen. John Grant of Tampa, former Hillsborough Sheriff Cal Henderson and County Commissioner Al Higginbotham. Retired sheriff’s Maj. Al Perotti talked to the crowd about his time as a deputy under Beard, who served as sheriff from 1965 to 1978.
Beard is a native of Georgia who moved to Sulphur Springs at age 5 in 1924. After graduating from the University of Tampa, he went on to a long career in public service, joining the Tampa Police Department in the 1940s, serving as Hillsborough constable from 1957 to 1965, and being elected sheriff in 1964.
After leaving law enforcement, he was elected to the state House of Representatives in 1978, then served in the state senate from 1980 to 1996.
Beard also served in the U.S. Navy during World War II
The Bloomingdale High School chamber orchestra opened Wednesday’s ceremony by playing the national anthem.