The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Movers and Shakers: New adds for Florida League of Cities, Department of Corrections

6

December

The Florida League of Cities added David Cruz to its lobbying team, the group announced Tuesday. Cruz will focus on community redevelopment, economic development, growth management, elections, homeland security and charter schools. He earned bachelor's degrees from Florida International University and a law degree from Barry University.

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Ann Howard will exchange her communications duties at the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles for a new role at the Department of Corrections on Dec. 16. She replaces former communications director Gretl Plessinger, who left DOC for FDLE. Howard is a Virginia Tech alum who co-hosts "Live in Tallahassee," a weekly TV show spotlighting events in the state capital.

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CFO Jeff Atwater appointed Daniel Anderson as director of the agency's Division of Insurance Fraud. Anderson worked for the Drug Enforcement Administration for 25 years. He starts in January.

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TV anchor and reporter Lauren Searcy has joined the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association as press secretary. Searcy was the host of "Daybreak" and the "Good Morning Show" for WCTV, the CBS-affiliate in Tallahassee. She is a Jacksonville native and Florida State alumnus.

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Ryan Wiggins is the new communications director for the Department of Health. She most recently worked in the press shop of the Department of Children and Families, which she joined this year after a stint as vice president of communications with Florida TaxWatch. Previous employers include former Attorney General Bill McCollum, the Florida Department of Transportation, former Gov. Charlie Crist and U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller in Washington, D.C.

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Michael Manguso, longtime staffer of the Governor's Office Policy and Budget, is retiring from his job as policy chief of the public safety unit, where he worked under three governors. He previously spent almost 30 years with the Department of Corrections.  Replacing him as policy chief is Jason Welty, who joined the unit in February as a senior analyst for juvenile justice issues. Welty earned his masters of public affairs from Indiana University.

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In media news, Tia Mitchell started this week as a reporter in the Capitol bureau of the St. Petersburg Times and Miami Herald. Mitchell previously worked in Times' Tampa bureau, which she joined in January after nine years at the Florida Times-Union. She is a Florida A&M alumnus and Kentucky native.

And Lilly Rockwell will join Florida Trend next week as an associate editor based in Tallahassee. Rockwell previously worked for the News Service of Florida, where she reported primarily on education. A University of Texas grad, she has worked for 850 and Tallahassee magazines, as well as the business desk of the Austin American-Statesman.

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Send your personnel news to Katie Sanders at ksanders [at] tampabay [dot] com or via Twitter @KatieLSanders.

[Last modified: Tuesday, December 6, 2011 5:56pm]

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