TARPON SPRINGS — City officials haven't even posted the job opening yet and they've already got their first applicant to replace current City Manager Ellen Posivach.
W.D. Higginbotham Jr., 66, a former Gainesville city manager, has thrown his hat into the ring.
City commissioners voted April 16 to begin looking for a new city manager, but they have not fired Posivach. On Tuesday, they'll discuss the process for that search at a public workshop at 6:30 p.m.
In a letter sent to city officials Tuesday, Higginbotham said he has spent the past five months in Iraq as a consultant, advising local officials on budgetary and financial matters.
Before that, he was the town manager in Surfside and Melbourne Beach.
He served as Gainesville's city manager from 1984 to 1989.
"I'm anxious to get back to doing what I've been doing for so many years," Higginbotham said Thursday.
Higginbotham said he believes his experience as director of economic development for the North Central Florida Regional Planning Council could benefit Tarpon Springs.
Higginbotham said he was aware of recent complaints by Tarpon Springs commissioners that Posivach seems disconnected from employees and residents.
"One of the things I've always prided myself on is my ability to connect not only with the staff, but with the community," he said.
Mayor Beverley Billiris said her office had received Higginbotham's resume and passed it along to the human resources department. Billiris said his information would be reviewed along with other applicants' once a formal search is launched.
Higginbotham said he has also sent a letter of interest to Madeira Beach, which is also seeking a city manager.
He lives in Hollywood, Fla., with his wife, Dona.
Rita Farlow can be reached
or (727) 445-4162.