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Gov. Crist shakes up board overseeing Florida universities

Gov. Charlie Crist shook up the board that oversees Florida universities on Thursday, replacing the current chair and three other members — all originally appointed by previous Gov. Jeb Bush.

Gone from the Board of Governors is current chairwoman Sheila McDevitt of St. Petersburg. Still on the board: vice chairwoman Ava Parker, whom Crist reappointed.

The governor also named five new board members, including Realtor Richard A. Beard III, 66, of Tampa, a longtime member of the Florida Council of 100 and founding chairman of the USF Board of Trustees.

Crist attended Thursday's Board of Governors meeting in Tampa to unveil his higher education budget.

Also ousted from the board: former chairwoman Carolyn Roberts of Ocala, businessman John Dasburg and Zachariah P. Zachariah, a Fort Lauderdale cardiologist who donates generously to the Bush family and is under Securities and Exchange Commission scrutiny for alleged insider trading.

The other new appointments:

• Dean Colson, Crist's higher education adviser.

• Patricia Frost, 72, of Miami Beach, a longtime teacher and principal in the Miami-Dade County public schools. She is currently a trustee at Florida International University.

• Daytona Beach developer Morteza "Mori" Hosseini, a frequent donor and member of the Florida Council of 100.

• John Rood, 54, of Jacksonville, chairman of the Vestcor Companies and former U.S. ambassador to the Bahamas.

Shannon Colavecchio can be reached at or (850) 224-7263.

Gov. Crist shakes up board overseeing Florida universities 01/28/10 [Last modified: Thursday, January 28, 2010 10:44pm]
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