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Seminole fills City Council seat left vacant by promotion

SEMINOLE — A Largo police sergeant is slated to become the newest member of this city's council.

Council members agreed during a Thursday workshop to appoint Christopher Burke to the group's open seat. Burke has said he will accept the appointment, which the council is scheduled to make official during Tuesday's meeting. Burke would be sworn in Nov. 27.

Burke would fill the vacancy left by Leslie Waters when she moved up to become interim mayor after Jimmy Johnson resigned this month. Johnson cited ill health for his resignation. Burke would serve the remainder of Waters' term, which ends in November 2015.

Seminole council members chose Burke because he was the third highest vote-getter in the March election. Burke trailed Waters and Patricia Plantamura, who were both re-elected.

Burke, 48, moved to Seminole in 1979. He graduated from Seminole High School and graduated summa cum laude from St. Petersburg Junior College (now St. Petersburg College) with a liberal arts degree and magna cum laude from the University of South Florida with a bachelor's degree in history.

He served 12 years in the Army and Army Reserve. He was nominated for the Bronze Star during the Persian Gulf War.

He joined the Largo Police Department in 1989 and is past president of both the Quail Ridge Homeowners Association and the Blessed Sacrament School Advisory Commission.

Waters has said she intends to run for mayor in the upcoming March election. Also up for grabs will be the two council seats currently held by Thom Barnhorn and James Quinn. The election, scheduled for the 12th, will be the last Seminole city election held in March. Future city elections will be held in November.

Winners of the upcoming races will serve until November 2016.

Qualifying for the election opens at 9 a.m. Dec. 4 and closes at 4 p.m. Dec. 17. For information, call Rose Benoit, Seminole city clerk, at (727) 391-0204.

Anne Lindberg can be reached at alindberg@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8450.

Seminole fills City Council seat left vacant by promotion 11/10/12 [Last modified: Saturday, November 10, 2012 3:31am]
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