Four candidates are running to replace Sheriff Tommy Seagraves, who is not seeking reelection.

Bill Leeper, Chris Hartley, Garland "Bubba" Rhoden and Steve Whitley are all Republicans, but since no Democrat is in the race, all Nassau County voters will see this race on their ballot and the winner of primary will be the sheriff for the next four years.

Scroll down and read about each of the candidates:

Bill Leeper

AGE:  58

FAMILY:  Married to high school sweetheart Emma Lannon Leeper for 30 years; son, Jordan (28); daughter Chelsea (24)

OCCUPATION: Retired captain with the Florida Highway Patrol; small business owner in downtown Fernandina Beach

EDUCATION:  Fernandina Beach High School, class of 1971; Associate of arts, Florida Community College at Jacksonville; Bachelor of arts, Columbia College-Missouri; Florida Highway Patrol Academy; University of Louisville's Southern Police Institute; Northwestern University's senior management leadership program; law enforcement science and criminal justice certificate, National Chiefs Association

POLITICAL EXPERIENCE:  Former city commissioner and two-term mayor of Fernandina Beach

WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE TOP THREE ISSUES IN THIS RACE?

  • Addressing drug problems, specifically prescription drug fraud and abuse.
  • Improving officer training standards and qualifications.
  • Focusing on reducing domestic violence and crimes against elders and children.


HOW CAN YOU HELP VOTERS IN A WAY IN A WAY THAT OTHERS RUNNING FOR THIS OFFICE CANNOT?

  • 'Nassau County is my home. It's where I grew up and where I learned the core values that have guided me my entire life. I bring over 35 years of professional law enforcement experience to the table. This combined with having served as a two-term Mayor of Fernandina Beach, being a small business owner for 28 years and my extensive education gives me the unique perspective and skills sets to help ensure the success of the men and women of the Nassau County Sheriff's Office. I already have an established working relationship with other law enforcement agencies throughout northeast Florida. Additionally, I have proposed a plan to improve the sheriff's office and would encourage voters to go to my website at www.billleeper.com to learn more about my plan to improve public safety in Nassau County."


WHAT WOULD YOU HOPE TO BE REMEMBERED FOR ACCOMPLISHING AFTER SERVING IN THIS OFFICE?

  • "That I am a fair and honest law enforcement professional who cares about the citizens of Nassau County. It is my hope that upon completion of my service in this office we will have the best trained and equipped law enforcement professionals in Northeast Florida. We will have reduced the impact that illegal drug use has on our community and we will have created a strong relationship between the law enforcement community and the citizens of the county. I plan to be accessible and will continue to aid and assist the residents of Nassau County to ensure our community remains a safe place to live, work and raise a family and one that will be attractive to new companies, investment and growth that will create jobs."


CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: BillLeeper.com | Facebook.com/Bill-Leeper-for-Nassau-County-Sheriff

Chris Hartley

AGE:  41

FAMILY:  Wife & three children

OCCUPATION:  Retired

EDUCATION:  High school, college, graduate of two law enforcement academies

POLITICAL EXPERIENCE:  None

WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE TOP THREE ISSUES IN THIS RACE?

  1. "Not allowing the 'good old boy' network to plague Nassau County
  2. "Picking the candidate that will benefit the community the most and themselves the least
  3. "Electing someone who is not content with the status quo and someone who will bring in New Leadership and Not Old Politics"


HOW CAN YOU HELP VOTERS IN A WAY IN A WAY THAT OTHERS RUNNING FOR THIS OFFICE CANNOT?

  • "I have a proven track record of fiscal responsibility and true leadership that no other candidate has. I have done the job of a local deputy, I have owned and operated multi-million dollar businesses and I have employed hundreds of people. I am the only candidate that has the skill set and experience needed to run a tax payer funded multi-million dollar business without compromising public safety.


WHAT WOULD YOU HOPE TO BE REMEMBERED FOR ACCOMPLISHING AFTER SERVING IN THIS OFFICE?

  • "Leaving a legacy of leadership by example, rolling my sleeves up and doing what it takes to be successful and establishing a reputation of dignity and honor for the Nassau County Sheriff's Office."


CAMPAIGN WEBSITE:  HartleyForSheriff.com | Facebook.com/Chris-Hartley-for-Nassau-County-Sheriff

Garland "Bubba" Rhoden

AGE:  38

FAMILY:  Married to Kelly Armstrong Rhoden for 20 years; 5 daughters with ages ranging from 23 to 11; had our first grandson 3 months ago

OCCUPATION:  Nassau County Sheriff's Office, K-9 narcotics detective

EDUCATION:  Graduated from West Nassau High School in 1992;  put myself through Lake City Law Enforcement Academy at night and on the weekends while working as a state of Florida certified building bontractor.

POLITICAL EXPERIENCE:  First time running for any political office

WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE TOP THREE ISSUES IN THIS RACE?

  1. "Restoring morale among the employees and gaining citizen confidence in the Sheriff's Office.
  2. "Reaching out to other agencies, in all areas of government, to bring about professional cooperation among all of these agencies.
  3. "Providing a command staff that adheres to complete accountability providing confidence within the agency and the Public."


HOW CAN YOU HELP VOTERS IN A WAY IN A WAY THAT OTHERS RUNNING FOR THIS OFFICE CANNOT?

  • "Due to my current experience at the sheriff's office, I know what the issues are that need to be worked on. I am already in place to take over with an easy transition without having to hire anyone outside the agency to guide me or rely on other people's opinions of what to do. This will help reduce the cost to the Sheriff's Office and the community."

WHAT WOULD YOU HOPE TO BE REMEMBERED FOR ACCOMPLISHING AFTER SERVING IN THIS OFFICE?

  • "Establishing a Sheriff's Office that has gained a reputation for fairness in all areas of the community and building a cognitive committed employee and citizen's relationship."

CAMPAIGN WEBSITE:  www.Rhoden4Sheriff.com | Facebook.com/GarlandRhodenForNassauCountySheriff

Steve Whitley

AGE:  58

FAMILY:  Married to Carolyn; 4 sons (Mitch, Mike, Josh, and Matthew); 2 daughters (Holly Whitley Carroll and Tonya S. Sciandra); 10 grandchildren

OCCUPATION:  Retired deputy sheriff with 34 years law enforcement experience

EDUCATION:  1971 graduate of Paxon Sr. High School; U.S. Army Signal School;  Administrative School; Non-Commission Officers Leadership School; Army Management Course; Jacksonville Sheriff's Office Police Academy, FCCJ; criminal justice studies, South Florida; homicide investigation, Northeast Florida Criminal Justice Training Center; child homicide investigations, death investigations, evidence technician, hostage negotiation, field training officer, advance criminal law, kinesis (interviews and interrogations), University of North Florida International Police Training and Management Institute; homicide investigations, sects, cults and deviant movements, Santa Fe Community College; terrorism, New Mexico Tech; suicide and terrorist bombing, FBI; domestic terrorism for state and local law enforcement, Florida Department of Law Enforcement; Russian/European organized crime, questionable documents, Orange County Sheriff's Office; homicide crime scene, Nassau County Sheriff's Office; crisis intervention training, U.S. Customs Service; counterfeit coods, Miami-Dade Police Department; VIN verification (auto theft), State of Florida; civil process, hundreds of hours of additional training

POLITICAL EXPERIENCE: None

WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE TOP THREE ISSUES IN THIS RACE?

  1. Budget
  2. Public image of Sheriff's Office
  3. Employee retention

HOW CAN YOU HELP VOTERS IN A WAY THAT OTHERS IN THIS RACE CANNOT? 

  • "I am the only candidate that has the experience and knowledge of the Sheriff's Office to go to work for them on the very first day. I am the only candidate that has shown the leadership abilities to take the department forward."

WHAT WOULD YOU HOPE TO BE REMEMBERED FOR ACCOMPLISHING AFTER SERVING IN THIS OFFICE?

  • "I would like to be known as a honest and fair Sheriff and the Sheriff that brought back integrity to the Office."

CAMPAIGN WEBSITE:  None | Facebook.com/pages/Steve-Whitley-For-Nassau-County-Sheriff-Florida