Lobbyists, lawmaker, executives follow Scott to UK
Gov. Rick Scott's 85-member entourage in the United Kingdom this week includes business leaders, tourism executives, and even a couple of lobbyists and mayors. The manifest, provided by Enterprise Florida, includes Mayor Ashton Hayward of Pensacola along with outgoing Senate President Mike Haridopolos, who's on his third Scott trade mission.
Lobbyists who accompanied Scott across the pond include Marc Dunbar (parimutuels), Robert Hawken of FCCI Insurance Group, Fred Karlinsky (insurance and health care) and John Sebree of the Florida Association of Realtors. Tom Van Berkel, chairman of the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, is in England, as is Don Weidner, dean of the Florida State University College of Law. Mike and Nancy Crews of Custom Manufacturing and Engineering of Pinellas Park are trade mission exhibitors in London.
Also on the trip: George Zoley, chairman and CEO of The GEO Group, Inc., the private prison operator based in Boca Raton. Thirteen employees of Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach are in the UK as well.
First Lady Ann Scott accompanied her husband. Others from the governor's office on the trip include press aide Jackie Schutz, Scott travel aide Brad Piepenbrink and Ann Scott's aide Sarah Hansford.
Enterprise Florida spokesman Stuart Doyle said business community representatives decided on their own whether to go along, and are paying their own way. Doyle said a visit to Lloyd's of London is on the business of agenda, which is why some insurance representatives are attending, including state insurance commissioner Kevin McCarty.