Wednesday, September 26, 2018
News Roundup

In leadership change, St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership CEO moves to hospital foundation

St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership CEO Joni James is stepping down and David Metz, a former administrator for both the city of St. Petersburg and Pinellas County, will become the organization’s interim chief executive officer.

Metz, who will begin the job on Jan. 1, will oversee the private nonprofit business membership group while the board of directors seeks a permanent replacement. James is taking a senior leadership role at the Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg, the nonprofit charitable organization that owns a 20 percent stake in Bayfront Health St. Petersburg, according to a news release. Her new title will be "senior impact director," a new position in the foundation.

James joined the partnership in April 2015 during a period of "reinvigoration" for the St. Petersburg group, the release said. During her tenure, she supported the growth of the city’s marine science sector, the launch of the St. Pete Innovation District, and the facilitation of the Warehouse Arts District’s ArtsXchange project. She also participated in multiple visits with Cuban officials during the diplomatic coordination with other economic development partners.

"Joni has provided strategic leadership during a key time at the partnership, including forging strong relationships in the community that will pay long-term dividends for our organization and St. Petersburg," said Melissa Seixas, vice president for Florida government and community relations for Duke Energy and vice chair of the Downtown Partnership. "We wish Joni much success in her new role and we look forward to seeing her continued positive impact on our city."

Prior to joining the partnership, James worked as a journalist for the Miami Herald, the Wall Street Journal and the Tampa Bay Times, where she was an editor in the news and editorial departments.

While working for the city, Metz’s responsibilities included serving as deputy mayor for neighborhood services and the director of the downtown enterprise facilities department, which oversees the marina and the port, Albert Whitted Airport and Mahaffey Theater. Prior to retiring from the city in 2015, he was the interim city development administrator for Mayor Rick Kriseman.

Metz also worked as a senior manager for Pinellas County Economic Development and as director of the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport. He currently works part time with the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, his alma mater, as an economic development officer.

"We feel incredibly fortunate that Dave will help the partnership through this transition," said Jeff Hearn, senior vice president for investments with Raymond James and chairman of the Downtown Partnership. "Dave has incredible integrity. He knows our city, our partners and our organization well and will keep our momentum going forward."

Comments
Tampa Bay Whole Foods can now deliver through Amazon Prime Now

Tampa Bay Whole Foods can now deliver through Amazon Prime Now

Tampa Bay Whole Foods Market shoppers can finally get organic goodies delivered to their homes in a few hours as members of Amazon Prime. Amazon announced today that Whole Foods has added Tampa, nine other metro areas and parts of Seattle and New Yor...
Updated: 11 hours ago
New forward Danick Martel hoping to stick with Lightning

New forward Danick Martel hoping to stick with Lightning

TAMPA — Danick Martel didn't have much of an opportunity to ease his way into his time with the Lightning.On Sunday, 10,164 Lightning fans flocked to Amalie Arena to watch Martel's debut practice, also known as Fan Fest.As if there was not alre...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Rays journal: Jake Faria struggles in loss to Yankees

Rays journal: Jake Faria struggles in loss to Yankees

ST. PETERSBURG — After being formally eliminated Monday from the postseason chase, the Rays on Tuesday turned their focus to addressing some issues for next season.One is what to make of RHP Jake Faria, whose follow-up season to his impressive ...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Lightning journal: Kucherov leaves preseason game with lower-body injury

Lightning journal: Kucherov leaves preseason game with lower-body injury

F Nikita Kucherov played in the first period against the Panthers, but he did not return for the second.Midway through the second, the Lightning ruled him out for the rest of the game with a lower-body injury.Lightning coach Jon Cooper did not want t...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Already playing well, Rays’ Tommy Pham promises more

Already playing well, Rays’ Tommy Pham promises more

ST. PETERSBURGTommy Pham has been doing some impressive things for the Rays since coming off the DL after coming over from the Cardinals in a July 31 trade.Like hitting .357 in 32 games, posting a 1.087 OPS and reaching base in a career-best 27 strai...
Updated: 5 hours ago

High school scoreboard for Tuesday, September 25

Tuesday’s scoreboardBoys swimmingShorecrest 181, Tampa Prep 133Girls swimmingShorecrest 159, Tampa Prep 135
Updated: 5 hours ago
Wesley Chapel High instructional assistant accused of abusing special needs student on bus

Wesley Chapel High instructional assistant accused of abusing special needs student on bus

A Wesley Chapel High School special education instructional assistant was arrested Monday on two counts of child abuse after a school bus video showed him pushing a restrained special needs student down by the back of the head multiple times, accordi...
Updated: 7 hours ago
FEMA rolling out new flood zone maps for Tampa Bay counties

FEMA rolling out new flood zone maps for Tampa Bay counties

Thousands of Tampa Bay-area property owners could soon find themselves with new flood zone designations on their homes and businesses.The Federal Emergency Management Agency has completed a years-long study to update flood zone maps in Hillsborough, ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Markeis McGlockton’s autopsy shows he turned away from shooter

Markeis McGlockton’s autopsy shows he turned away from shooter

The autopsy for Markeis McGlockton, who was killed in a shooting that set off a debate about Florida’s stand your ground law, shows the bullet entered his body at an angle and tore through his heart and both lungs.The Pinellas-Pasco Medical Examiner’...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Madeira Beach's dirty laundry gets aired during ethics hearing

Madeira Beach's dirty laundry gets aired during ethics hearing

By Sheila Mullane Estrada Times Correspondent CLEARWATER — For seven hours, attorneys questioned and sometimes shouted at witnesses testifying either for or against Madeira Beach Commissioner Nancy Oakley in an ethics hearing that will determ...
Updated: 8 hours ago