UPDATED: City to Appoint New Ethics Board Member, Potential Conflicts Identified

Updated: Today the City Commission voted to appoint Carol Phillips to fill the vacant position on the City’s Ethics Board. Ms. Phillips’ is currently on the the Citizens Utility Advisory Board, but the City Attorney announced she would resign her position if appointed to the Ethics Board.

Ms. Phillips has served as a member and the Chairman of the Citizens Utility Advisory Board.

It was clear after Commissioner Maddox made the motion for Ms. Phillips and Commissioner Richardson seconded the motion, the Commission was more comfortable going with someone they knew rather than an applicant that was qualified, but new to the process.

There was no discussion about any of the other applicants before the vote.

After the vote,  both Commissioner Richardson and Commissioner Miller spoke glowingly of the appointment. Commissioner Miller commented that she had known Ms. Phillips for a long time.

Mayor Gillum commented it would be good to have non-lawyer and another woman on the Board.


Original report.

At 2:15 pm on Wednesday, January 6, 2016, the City Commission will have a “Special City Commission Meeting” to appoint a new member of the City’s Independent Ethics Board.

The position became vacant when Board member Lila Jaber announced her resignation.  See related reports here and here.

Shortly after the announcement of Jaber’s resignation, the City of Tallahassee set a deadline of November 20th, 2015 to receive applications to fill the vacancy.

When November 20th arrived, the City had received seven eligible applications. You must be a ‘registered elector’ of the city to be eligible.

However, instead of choosing from the seven eligible applicants, the City decided to extend the deadline to December 28th.

Tallahassee Reports requested and received copies of the seven original applicants and the additional six eligible applicants that filed before December 28th, 2015.

Listed below is a brief bio for each applicant. Also, you can review all applications by clicking here.

The pool of applicants include eleven with college degrees, five with advanced degrees, one with a Phd, several graduates from FSU, a graduate of West Point and a graduate of Harvard University.

Six applicants list their current employer as “retired”, two are FAMU students, and three are self-employed.

Potential Conflicts

After reviewing the applications, it appears two applicants may have conflicts of interest.

First, Mr. Hollinger listed his employer as the Tallahassee Urban League. The Urban League has requested and received funding from the Community Redevelopment Agency, which includes all five members of the City Commission, on several occasions.

And second, Carol Phillips is currently listed as a member of the City’s Utility Advisory Board. Members of that board serve at the pleasure of the City Manager.

TR will update this report after the meeting on Wednesday.


Applicants for City Ethics Board

Jim Clark
B.A., American Studies, FSU; M.A., Social Work, FSU; M.S. Urban & Regional Planning, FSU; M.A., Public Administration, Harvard University

Employment & other
Retired, state government work experience

Quaneisna Washington
FAMU student

Employment & other
None provided

Julia Keen
B.S., Criminology, FSU

Employment & other
Retired, state government experience

Delaitre Hollinger
A.A., Tallahassee Community College

Employment & other
Taylor Museum Curator/ Tallahassee Urban League; Previous candidate for local office, sits on a number of local community boards.

Bruce Grant
B.S., Engineering, West Point; M.S., Public Administration, Univ. of Puget Sound; PhD, Public Administration, FSU

Employment & other
Former state employee, consultant

Bob Fulford
B.S., Education, FSU; M.S., Administration, FSU

Employment & other
Retired, previous candidate for local office, former president of CONA

Howard Rasmussen
B.A. Sociology, Nebraska Wesleyan University; M.S. Criminal Justice, Michigan State University

Employment & other
Retired, state government, law enforcement experience

Applicants after original deadline:

Dennis Barton
B.A. History, Florida State University

Employment & other
Co-owner Engineering Educators, Inc. and PDHNow.com, LLC.

Shane Foe
B.S. Interpersonal Communications, Ohio University; MBA, Salem University

Employment & other
Corporate HR Director, Coastal Forest Resource Company, Havana, Florida.

Briana Sheflin
FAMU student in criminal justice.

Employment & other
Full-time student.

Carol Phillips
B.S., Attended Univ. of F., FSU, & Univ. of North Florida.

Employment & other
Retired, state government and private sector banking experience. Current member of Citizens Utility Board.

Reiner Kirsten
Graduate, College Hannover, Germany

Employment & other
Retired, Exec. Vice-President Operations, EMI Music Group

Amanda Clements
B.A. Communications, Florida State University

Employment & other
Senior Manager, Global Promotions, Visit Florida

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