The Honorable Jerry L. Maygarden holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Pensacola State College and the University of West Florida. He also completed professional development programs in public policy and administration conducted by the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and the Candler School of Theology at Emory University. Mr. Maygarden was awarded the Doctor of Humane Letters by the faculty and trustees of the University of West Florida in 2013.
Mr. Maygarden is a retired business leader with a long and distinguished career in public service. His professional life includes leadership roles in state and local government, health care and private philanthropy. He is a former city councilman and mayor of Pensacola who served as a state legislator and majority leader in the Florida House of Representatives. For many years, he served as president of the Baptist Health Care Foundation, and he was senior vice president and chief development officer for the Baptist medical system. Mr. Maygarden delayed retirement to serve as president and chief executive officer of the Greater Pensacola Chamber. He retired in October of 2015.
Mr. Maygarden is a life-long parishioner and servant-leader in the United Methodist Church. He is a founder of Ronald McDonald Charities of Northwest Florida, a Paul Harris Fellow in Rotary International, a 33⁰ Scottish Rite Mason, and a Foundation Fellow at the University of West Florida. He was a member of the United States Mobile Riverine Forces and is a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War.