Sarasota City Commissioners said they wanted to cast a wide net when they started their search for the next City Manager, and they appear to have received that in 100 applications.
From a J.C. Penney customer service specialist who worked on Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida and a former public works general manager for the City of Windsor, Ontario to a flight attendant for Express Jet Airlines and the Division Chief (Colonel) of U.S. Special Operations Command at MacDill Air Force Base.
Of course, the applicants aren't without controversy. Five Florida applicants who had worked in city manager roles were fired — one twice — and another applicant resigned amid a sexual scandal. (For a full list of applicants see the PDF with this story.)
Mike Becker, a suspended Ft. Myers Beach fire chief who abrubtly resigned this year, applied. He is accused by a woman who, "accuses him of leading her on during a romantic 9 month relationship and she claims to have a series of racy texts to make her case," according to WFTX-TV.
He is also still on the city's payroll, WFTX, also reported in March:
"This week Becker resigned. He will no longer report to work but he will be paid until June 19th, 2012. He makes $130,0000 dollars a year so that means taxpayers will still have to pay him about $35,000 dollars.
Since Becker has been with the District for nearly 22 years he will also retire with benefits."
in January under pressure under allegations of misconduct concering records, and he is still on city rolls.
He receives pay through June from his $177,000 yearly salary as severance and a $10,000 retainer for an attorney if he will face criminial charges.
Michael Czymbor, who was ousted in January as Fernandina Beach city manager, also applied.
Czymbor was repremanded for at least three city projects and was also criticized for a parking plan, the Fernandina Beach News-Leader reported:
"Czymbor was also criticized for promoting an unpopular paid-parking plan, accepting a new city vehicle when his current vehicle had 26,000 miles on it, trying to ground street peddler Felix Jones and for supporting the controversial Forward Fernandina strategic plan."
Then there's Mike Good, former Hallandale Beach City Manager in Broward County. According to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel he was fired because, "chronic absences, an uncommunicative work style and questionable contracts" in June 2010.
Good received a $366,653 severance package, the paper reported.
Gary King was fired without cause in Cape Coral as city manager, WFTX reported. He exposed a "scandalous inefficiency in public works," the TV station reported, but was criticized for layoffs which promoted police and fire unions to support his ouster.
Former Casselberry City Manager Barbara Lipscomb was fired in January because "it was time for a new top manager at City Hall and are looking for someone who can lure shops and other businesses into Casselberry, especially along the U.S. Highway 17-92 corridor," the Orlando Sentinel reported.
And to no one's surprise, Susan Stanton applied for the job just as she had declared her intentions in Februrary.
Stanton, a transgendered female who applied for the job in 2007, e-mailed Mayor Suzanne Atwell on Feb. 13 expressing interest in the post:
"About five years ago, I interviewed for City Manager for Sarasota shortly after leaving my previous job as City Manager in Largo Florida. I was interested in the job at the time because I love the community and felt I had much to offer.
With the resignation of Bob, I am once again exciting about this potential opportunity."
The city hired Robert Bartolotta instead in 2007, and following the controversy of mishandled computer files that could have violated open records and privacy acts.
Stanton became a nationwide story for being a transgendered woman applying for the job. Susan used to be Steven Stanton and was ousted as city manager in Largo in 2007 after she told officials that she would have a sex change operation. CNN even filmed a 2010 documentary on Stanton called "Her Name Was Steven."
Stanton was fired as Lake Worth city manager in December, according to the Palm Beach Post, after new commissioners came into office, citing a "sense of distrust and anger among residents."
Beyond those candidates here's a breakdown of how the candidates fall:
• Five fired city managers from Florida
• 26 who have or held jobs in Florida
• 23 current or former city managers/administrators
• 5 current for former town managers/adminstrators
• 4 current or former assistant/deputy city managers
• 4 current or former township managers/administrators
• 3 current for former village managers/administrators
• 3 current or former county managers/administrators
• 1 deputy county administrator
• 1 borough manager
The city is expected to narrow the list in May and interview finalists in June.
(For full list of applicants, see PDF to the right of this story.)
Jean Atkins — Director of Voter Administrator Office Manager in Jacksonville
Mike Becker — Former Fort Myers Beach Fire Chief
Thomas Christie — Daytona Beach City Manager
Michael Czymbor — Former Fernandina Beach City Manager
Lee dePalo — Division Chief (Colonel) U.S. Special Operations Command, MacDill AFB,
James "Andy" Edwards — Administrative Services Director/CFO, AG Holley State Hospital in Lantana
Kenneth Fields - Southwest Ranches Town Administrator
John Fraser — Municipal Resources Consultant
Jim Gleason — Mascotte City Manager
Sean Goldeer — Twin Oaks Juvenile Development Executive Director in Greenville
Dwayne "Mike" Good — Former Hallandale Beach City Manager
Thomas Heck — Former Manalapan Town Manager
Thomas Heeney — Florida Gulf Coast University Research Assistant and political science instructor
Marsha Key — Former Key Tax tax consultant in Florida and Massachusetts
Gary King — Former Cape Coral City Manager
Barbar Lipscomb — Former Casselberry City Manager
Scott Mendelsberg — Assistant director/chief financial officer of Miami-Dade Fire Rescue
Lawrence Miller —Arcadia City Administrator
Ed Mitchell — West Palm Beach City Administrator
Troy Perry — Consultant based in Florida
Raymond Rammo — former Director of Engineering in the Broward County Health Department
John Revelle — Former Polk County Board of County Commissioner
Michelle Sauls — Paralegal/Office Manager of The Law Offices of Ophelia Bernal-Mora
Susan Stanton — Former Lake Worth City Manager and former Largo City Manager
Fred Vella — J.C. Penney Customer Service Specialist in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida
Paul White — Riviera Beach Assistant City Manager