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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Largo city manager search narrowed to 2 finalists



LARGO — City commissioners chose two finalists for city manager Friday afternoon following a round of phone interviews.

The commission decided on Henry Schubert, one of Largo's assistant city managers, and Russ Blackburn, who served as Gainesville's city manager for a decade until November. Mayor Woody Brown said the candidates were great across the board, but Schubert and Blackburn came out on top because of their experience and emphasis on building city pride.

"Both interviewed well and discussed reaching out to the community more. Both had a great track record," Brown said. "With either one of them, we'll be in a good spot."

Commissioners chose from eight semi-finalists after the applicant pool was cut down from more than 150. They included Mike Staffopoulos, Largo's other assistant city manager; Rob DiSpirito, the ex-Dunedin city manager who resigned in January following mixed reviews of his performance; and four out-of-state candidates.

The commission will make its decision after a round of in-person interviews on Feb. 24. 

[Last modified: Friday, February 12, 2016 4:00pm]


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