Scott Arceneaux departs Fla Dem party after seven years
Scott Arceneaux, the cajun transplant who served as executive director of the Florida Democratic Party for nearly eight years, is stepping down as the party starts a nationwide search for a replacement. Newly elected chairman Stephen Bittel has hired Juan Penalosa and Reggie Cardozo as transition advisers, and Arceneaux will remain on board until a successor is found.
A 46-year-old attorney, Arceneaux managed to keep the job despite several tough election cycles and plenty of second-guessing and criticism from grassroots organizers and consultants. That's largely because he was a smart and stable force widely respected and trusted by top elected officials and donors.
His job often entailed saying no to politicians, operatives and activists, which is not a way to make friends. That Arceneaux remained executive director as long as he did during often awful conditions for Democrats in Florida is testament to his professionalism and skill.
“I have been blessed for over seven and a half years to work with amazing people, surrounded by friends and colleagues who I respect, all for a cause and an organization I deeply believe in,” said Arceneaux in a statement. “I want to thank all the dedicated Democrats, elected officials, candidates, volunteers, staff, and party leaders across our great state who made my time at the FDP truly rewarding.”
“Finally, I want to thank Chairs Thurman, Smith, Tant, and Bittel for their friendship, trust, and leadership,” Arceneaux added. “I am excited to help Stephen begin his tenure as Chair and look forward to the energy and vision he brings to the job. I know he will take the state party to the next level.”
“I want to extend my thanks on behalf of all Florida Democrats to Scott for his incredible service to this party,” said FDP Chair Bittel. “Under his leadership we’ve set fundraising records, professionalized and expanded staff operations, and built the strongest digital and communications program of any state party in the country. He’s been a tremendous asset to the team and we wish him all the best.
“Additionally, I’m pleased to announce the hiring of Juan Penalosa and Reggie Cardozo to serve as Transition Advisors, and Tessa Bay as Director of the Chair’s Office as we work to hold the Trump administration accountable and prepare for 2018,” Bittel added. “Our goal is to build the strongest statewide grassroots operation in FDP history, and I know Juan, Reggie and Tessa will help put us in the position to do just that. They bring a wealth of grassroots organizing experience and deep Florida connections to the FDP and I’m thrilled to have them on the team.”