John Rivera, a retired Miami-Dade Police Department Sergeant and former President of the Florida Police Benevolent Association and Dade County Police Benevolent Association, is a founder and President of The BIG50.
During his law enforcement career, Rivera took countless violent criminals off the streets. Rivera worked in the Organized Crime Bureau investigating cases involving organized crime and political and public corruption. He was also the lead investigator on the Mariel Task Force.
Throughout his career, Rivera faced situations that became the foundation for his unwavering advocacy of law enforcement officers and the challenges they face: Rivera was shot in the line of duty while thwarting an attempted armed kidnapping and held a fellow officer as he died in Rivera’s arms. That is why John Rivera is so adamant about never forgetting those who serve and protect.
Rivera’s calling to be a voice for law enforcement began in 1989 when he was elected to the Dade County PBA Board of Directors. He served on the board until December 1992, when he was elected president of the Association. He served as the longest Dade County PBA President from January 1993 through 2018.
Rivera also served as president of the Florida PBA, which represents 30,000 officers across Florida. He is a vocal advocate for law enforcement and is committed to educating the public on the challenges officers face daily.
Rivera was appointed by the Governor to serve as a Commissioner on the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission, overseeing the training and certification of all sworn law enforcement personnel in the state of Florida. He’s also served as a member of the Task Force on Performance and Efficiency in Miami-Dade County Government.
Rivera has lectured across the Country at various symposiums, including Harvard University, on topics facing law enforcement and the role of labor unions. In 2011, Rivera was asked to share his leadership and insight at the National Executive Session on Policing and Public Safety sponsored by the Harvard Kennedy School, the National Institute of Justice, and the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Rivera also hosted the Rapid Response Radio Show on 880 The Biz; repeatedly appears on national and local television programs commenting on law enforcement issues and solutions to problems facing our law enforcement community; and has been published in numerous publications.
He is the recipient of many awards, including the Sherman Winn Award for his commitment to the community, and the Concerns of Police Survivors “Distinguished Service Award.”