TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Wilton Simpson announced a leadership transition for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Office of Agriculture Law Enforcement and the appointment of Rick “Lee” Adams Jr. as its new director. Commissioner Simpson issued the oath of office to Colonel Lee Adams today at the Florida State Capitol.
“First, I want to thank Colonel James Wiggins for his more than two decades of service to the state of Florida and his dedicated leadership of the Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement,” said Commissioner Wilton Simpson. “Colonel Lee Adams will bring a level of excellence, professionalism, and integrity that is in keeping with the tradition of the Office of Agriculture Law Enforcement. I am confident that his unique skills and experience will keep Floridians and businesses safe.”
Colonel Adams, who has more than 30 years of law enforcement experience, will oversee the office and it’s more than 230 sworn law enforcement officers. Colonel Adams started his law enforcement career at the Panama City Beach Police Department before moving to the Bay County Sherriff Office. Most recently, Colonel Adams served with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for nearly 20 years in a variety of investigative, intelligence, training, policy, dignitary protection, and special operations roles. Colonel Adams earned his bachelor’s degree in criminology from Florida State University.
The Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement (OALE) conducts criminal investigations relating to any matter over which the department has jurisdiction, protects consumers from unfair and deceptive trade practices, protects Florida’s agriculture industry from theft and other crimes, and safeguards the wholesomeness of Florida’s food and other consumer products. In support of its mission, the Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement operates more than 20 agricultural interdictions stations around the state. Officers conduct vehicle inspections 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to protect Florida’s food supply and prevent the introduction and spread of agricultural pests and diseases.