Gilmore resigns as Tampa Chamber chairman-elect in wake of Workforce Alliance scandal
Is this a bad karma year for Renee Benton Gilmore? The former head of the Tampa Bay Workforce Alliance. a publicly funded job training center, quit her job on Feb. 15 amid accusations of extravagant spending by her agency at a time of record-breaking unemployment in Florida. Subsequent coverage has revealed yet more questionable activity, including investigation of the workforce alliance by law enforcement.
Given such rough publicity, it comes as little surprise that Gilmore also stepped down as chairman-elect of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. She would have taken the chamber's top elected spot this coming December, succeeding current chairman Chuck Sykes of Sykes Enterprises.
"Renee has resigned her position," Rafaela A. Amador-Carlisle, the chamber's public affairs vice president confirmed. "The Chamber will now convene a nominating committee to fill the vacancy." One possible candidate? Attorney John Robinson (photo, right) with Fowler White Boggs, who now serves as the chamber's secretary/treasurer.
As for Gilmore, who was paid $170,000 a year at the alliance, her days in the spotlight are not over. For now, she's started a consulting company,The Saja Group LLC, this month, but there's no word on whether clients expect to be well fed.
-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist