Behind the Badge: Officer Dario Montero

Alexandra Torres-Perez

Montero was hired on August 29 last year and said he has made many great memories in his first year here at UNF.

Around a year ago, Dario Montero came to UNF as a police officer for the first time. In a year, he has won the hearts of several students as their favorite officer.

“His support has been very much appreciated,” President of the Musical Theatre Club Maddie Aquino said. “It’s great to know that there’s someone who works so hard to ensure that we can achieve our goals safely.”

Musical Theatre Club gave Officer Montero a signed poster after he came to their showcase. Photo courtesy of the UNFPD Facebook.

The Musical Theatre Club invited Montero to their showcase, and were surprised to see him at the actual show. The club was extremely appreciative of the fact that he came, and gave Officer Montero a poster signed by all the members. He recalls that moment as one of his favorite UNF memories so far.

“It really touched my heart,” Montero said. “I really enjoyed the performance, and everyone did an awesome job.”

Officer Montero tries to be a role model by interacting with students and being friendly to everyone. His greatest satisfaction would be seeing those students at their end of their journey at graduation.

“If you are having a rough time, we are here to help,” Montero said. “We have the resources to help.”

Montero enjoys being a part of the UNF community. He has his own Spinnaker radio show called “Una Noche Latina”, where he plays some of his favorite music–Latin jazz. On his free time, Officer Montero plays the congas with local bands in Jacksonville. He even got to play with Dave Valenteen, who he regarded as one of the best Latin jazz flute players.

The 44-year-old officer is originally from Venezuela, but came to the United States in 1998 to look for freedom and an opportunity to pursue law enforcement as a career. Before coming to UNF, he was a public service assistant for three years and a deputy for five months at the St. John’s County Sheriff office. He decided to come to UNF for a safer environment, and because he liked the college atmosphere. 

“I will do my best to help them when they need me,” Montero said. “We are here for them. To protect them and be safe.”

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