Last modified: Tuesday, February 09, 2016
NORTHAMPTON — Hampshire County Sheriff Robert Garvey, who has held the position for 32 years, announced Monday he will not seek re-election in November, his office confirmed.

A native of Amherst, Garvey was appointed by then-Gov. Michael Dukakis in 1984 following the death of then-Sheriff John Boyle. Garvey has been elected to five, six-year terms since.

He previously served on the Amherst Select Board from 1971 until 1976, and the former Hampshire County Commission from 1976 to 1984. He served as chairman of the commission. Garvey was also president of the Massachusetts Sheriffs’ Association from 1994 to 1996.

Garvey received two honors in 2002. He was given the Ferris E. Lucas Award as the national Sheriff of the year, and the Howard B. Gill Lifetime Achievement Award from the Correctional Association of Massachusetts.

State Rep. Ellen Story, D-Amherst, said Garvey was “unflappable” in his tenure as sheriff. Story said Monday she first encountered Garvey when he was a school teacher, a job he held for more than two decades before he was appointed sheriff.

“Sometimes the sheriff is a very divisive figure, but not” Garvey, Story said. “He’s cool, calm and collected ... and that’s what you need in a public servant and especially a sheriff.”

Garvey is married to Jane Garvey, former administrator of the Fedderal Aviation Administration.

The Gazette could not reach Garvey for comment Monday.

Michael Majchrowicz can be reached at mmajchrowicz@gazettenet.com.