Records show that local political insider Sean Pittman, whose connections to the City of Tallahassee have recently been diminished, has made moves to increase his influence with the Leon County School (LCS) Board.
In fact, Pittman’s recent activities with the LCS Board is beginning to look remarkably similar to his activities with the City of Tallahassee over a 15 year period.
During one stretch of time, Pittman was a campaign vendor for two Tallahassee city commissioners, a donor to all five Tallahassee City Commissioners, was being paid by the City of Tallahassee to lobby state government, was lobbying the city commission, and was a frequent traveler with Mayor Andrew Gillum.
Records now show Pittman’s relationship with the City of Tallahassee has changed significantly.
Currently, none of the current city commissioners have paid Pittman or his company, ESP Media, for campaign services. Also, he is no longer being paid to lobby state government for the City of Tallahassee, he is not a registered city lobbyist, and his choice for mayor, Dustin Daniels, lost to former Leon County Commissioner John Dailey.
However, recent campaign records and a review of Pittman’s activities show he has made efforts to increase his influence with the Leon County School Board.
During the controversial 2016 race for Leon County Superintendent, Pittman donated $2,000 to candidate Rocky Hanna. This donation came after a campaign donation to Scott Maddox, who also made a run for the position.
Hanna went on to win the superintendent’s race in 2016. Maddox recently plead guilty to federal charges that included bribery.
During the 2018 election cycle, Pittman again weighed in on school board races. He was hired as a campaign consultant by Daryl Jones who went on to win his race against incumbent LCS Board member Maggie Lewis-Butler.
Pittman was also hired by Marcus Nicolas as a campaign consultant in a race against incumbent LCS Board member Joy Bowen. Bowen went on to be re-elected.
During the 2018 campaign cycle Pittman also donated $250 to LCS Board member Alva Striplin, who won her race against Ricky Bell.
Also, a little over three months ago Pittman rolled out the “Sean Pittman Show.” The podcast is billed as a show “where we talk about politics, business, entertainment, sports, and all the things that make us who we are! Each week, we feature guests and discuss topics that matter most to you.”
A review of the shows to date, reveal that six of the guests are current or former elected officials with connections to Pittman. Two of the current elected officials include current LCS Board member Darly Jones and Superintendent Rocky Hanna.
Superintendent Hanna appeared on the show days after the recent school transportation crisis hit.
If Pittman continues to follow the approach he implemented with the City of Tallahassee, there will be an increase in the use of campaign donations and public relation opportunities to benefit favored officials. This will ultimately lead to more campaign work for Pittman and eventually, lobbying or consulting fees from vendors that want work with the LCS.
Tallahassee Reports will continue to monitor these activities.