The Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office is pleased to announce the addition of Jessica Lea to our family as the new Mental Health Coordinator.

As a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), Mrs. Lea brings the expertise and knowledge to benefit our department and the community significantly.

As our Mental Health Coordinator, Jessica will serve as a critical resource, collaborating closely with the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office personnel, advocating for the mental well-being of our officers and their families, and fostering an environment of understanding and positive regard.

Additionally, she will provide guidance and training to our peer support team, bringing positive outcomes to mitigating critical incident stressors and ensuring continuous development and efficiency.

Sheriff Noel E. Stephen stated, “The mental well-being of our deputies and staff is paramount. Bringing Jessica on board is a significant step towards enhancing our resources and support. Her experience and dedication will undoubtedly make a positive impact.”

Jessica, a fifth-generation native from Ft. Pierce, holds a dual master’s and specialist degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Florida. She has a strong track record of working with diverse individuals, couples, and families to overcome various mental health challenges.

With years of experience in counseling and a deep understanding of the unique challenges faced by first responders, Jessica is well-prepared to assist in addressing the mental health needs of the officers and staff. Her presence will bolster the office’s commitment to its members’ “mental health and well-being.” We are confident that with Mrs. Lea’s expertise, we will see strengthened ties within the agency and a rejuvenated focus on mental health initiatives.

Jessica Lea expressed excitement about this new opportunity: “I feel honored to join the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office team and work closely with our dedicated first responders. I aim to create a safe and supportive place to address their mental health needs, stressors, and experiences, ultimately helping them lead healthier and more fulfilling lives.”

Jessica returned to South Florida after completing her education and has worked for the past seven years in supporting the community of Okeechobee with mental health resources. “Okeechobee is a close-knit town, where community bonds run deep, and people are proud of their heritage.

“Together, we can build upon these strong foundations to ensure the well-being of our beloved town and its people. My commitment lies in advocating for physical health and our community’s mental and social needs.”

Please join us in welcoming Jessica Lea to our team.