Tia Mitchell, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

Tia Mitchell

Tia Mitchell covers state government and politics in the Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald Tallahassee Bureau. She joined the politics team in late 2011 after working as a general assignment reporter in the Times' Tampa bureau for most of the year. Tia is a graduate of Florida A&M University with a degree in journalism. She has worked at the Florida Times-Union newspaper in Jacksonville and has also interned at the Tallahassee Democrat and the Ocala Star-Banner. She is originally from Louisville, Ky.

Phone: (850) 224-7263

Email: tmitchell@tampabay.com

Twitter: @TBTia

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  1. John Thrasher named FSU president

    Blog

    The search that began in March and stalled over the summer because of the long shadow cast by a powerful state senator ended Tuesday when the Florida State University Board of Trustees named Sen. John Thrasher the school’s new president.

    Supporters say Thrasher, 70, is the best person to help FSU reach its $1 billion fundraising goal and its aspiration to become one of the top 25 public universities....

    State Sen. John Thrasher is Florida State University's new president.
  2. Today's the day FSU picks a new president

    Blog

    The search that began in March and stalled over the summer because of the long shadow cast by a powerful state senator is expected to end today.

    Florida State University will pick a new president this afternoon, and Sen. John Thrasher is among four finalists. Several members of the Board of Trustees who will make the final selection have supported Thrasher politically over the years.

    All four finalists will interview with the board for about an hour today. Thrasher, former West Virginia University Provost Michele Wheatly and Richard Marchase, vice president of research and economic development at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, are all in Tallahassee. Michael Martin, chancellor of the Colorado State University System who is still recovering from surgery to repair a detached retina, will interview using videoconferencing....

  3. Florida State names state Sen. John Thrasher its new president

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — A search that began in March and stalled over the summer because of the long shadow cast by a powerful state senator ended Tuesday when the Florida State University board of trustees named Sen. John Thrasher the school's new president.

    "I am honored to have been selected by the board of trustees to serve as Florida State University's next president," Thrasher said in a news release. "I look forward to leading the university to even higher levels of excellence. My goal is to advance the faculty and the research, service and teaching mission of this university. I want Florida State to be the best place for students to receive an education, so they can realize their dreams."...

    Republican state Sen. John Thrasher touted his fundraising prowess in his application and was selected by the board of trustees by a vote of 11-2.
  4. FSU presidential search committee recommends keeping all 4 finalists, including Thrasher

    College

    TALLAHASSEE — Florida State University's presidential search committee wrapped up its work Monday by agreeing to recommend all four finalists, including state Sen. John Thrasher, to the school's Board of Trustees.

    The board will interview the four finalists today before making their pick. In addition to Thrasher, the finalists are former West Virginia University provost Michele Wheatly, Colorado State University System Chancellor Michael Martin and Richard Marchase, vice president of research and economic development at the University of Alabama at Birmingham....

  5. FSU foes point to John Thrasher's ties to Koch brothers

    Blog

    Set to run in Saturday's paper:

    One of the latest lines of attack against state Sen. John Thrasher becoming Florida State University's next president: Tying him to the billionaire libertarian Koch brothers.

    But Thrasher's ties to the political activists — whose name at FSU is especially radioactive since a controversial gift several years ago — are not as clear as some are suggesting....

  6. John Thrasher's FSU foes point to political links with Koch brothers

    Blog

    From a story running in Saturday's paper:

    One of the latest lines of attack against state Sen. John Thrasher becoming Florida State University's next president: Tying him to the billionaire libertarian Koch brothers.

    But Thrasher's ties to the political activists — whose name at FSU is especially radioactive since a controversial gift several years ago — are not as clear as some are suggesting....

  7. Thrasher's political links with billionaire Kochs questioned

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — One of the latest lines of attack against state Sen. John Thrasher becoming Florida State University's next president: Tying him to the billionaire libertarian Koch brothers.

    Thrasher does have ties to the political activists — who are especially radioactive at FSU since giving a controversial gift several years ago. But though the links are not as clear as some are suggesting, even the potential they represent is stirring some dissent....

    State Sen. John Thrasher  has received donations from the Libertarian Koch brothers, including $1,000 to his campaign in 2012 and another $1,000 in February.
  8. Jeff Atwater says FAU bid shouldn't affect re-election efforts

    Blog

    Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater met with the Times' editorial board today and talked about achievement during his first term office as he runs for re-election. He touched on effects of no-fault auto insurance reform, new policies that allow his office to monitor state contracts and even the environment.

    Atwater also explained the story behind his decision to apply for the presidency at Florida Atlantic University and why he believes voters should elect him to a second term without wondering if he is still looking for greener pastures elsewhere....

  9. After flirting with FAU, Jeff Atwater says he is loyal to CFO job

    Blog

    Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater met with the Tampa Bay Times editorial board today, where he talked about achievement during his first term office as he runs for re-election. Atwater touched on effects of no-fault auto insurance reform, new policies that allow his office to monitor state contracts and even the environment....

  10. Meet the four finalists in FSU's presidential search

    Blog

    A report in today's paper gives insight into the four finalists for FSU president:

    Most of the attention surrounding the search for Florida State University's next president has been on state Sen. John Thrasher. But he is just one of four finalists, and the only who has never worked in higher education.

    The FSU board of trustees is expected to make a final selection Tuesday, though that could change because one of the finalists, Michael Martin, had to postpone his interview after having emergency surgery for a detached retina....

  11. Meet the four finalists for FSU president

    Blog

    From today's paper:

    Most of the attention surrounding the search for Florida State University's next president has been on state Sen. John Thrasher. But he is just one of four finalists, and the only who has never worked in higher education.

    The FSU board of trustees is expected to make a final selection Tuesday, though that could change because one of the finalists, Michael Martin, had to postpone his interview after having emergency surgery for a detached retina....

  12. Meet the final four in FSU's presidential search

    College

    TALLAHASSEE — Most of the attention surrounding the search for Florida State University's next president has been on state Sen. John Thrasher. But he is just one of four finalists, and the only who has never worked in higher education.

    On Page 7B, you'll find more about all four finalists and why they want the job, gleaned from resumes and cover letters they submitted.

    The FSU board of trustees is expected to make a final selection Tuesday, though that could change because one of the finalists, Michael Martin, had to postpone his interview after having emergency surgery for a detached retina....

    John Thrasher, Florida state senator.
  13. UWF trustees stand behind Judy Bense after faculty no-confidence vote

    Blog

    From the Pensacola News Journal:

    University of West Florida faculty and the Board of Trustees are at odds over the perceived performance of President Judy Bense.

    University faculty aired a laundry list of grievances against Bense to a packed room in an emergency meeting of the Board of Trustees Monday morning, culminating in their call for Bense to step down from her position when her current term expires in June....

  14. Michael Martin, finalist for FSU president, won't make his Wednesday interview

    Blog

    Michael Martin, one of four finalists to become Florida State University's next president, notified the school today that he is sick and unable to travel to Tallahassee for his interview on Wednesday.

    Martin, chancellor of the Colorado State University System, is one of the favorites of FSU faculty although the vast majority of the schools' community has not had a chance to get to know him. Renisha Gibbs, vice chairman of the search committee, said Martin is still considered a candidate and any decision about rescheduling his interview will be made by this afternoon....

  15. Rep. Darryl Rouson lands gig at Clearwater law firm

    Blog

    More than a year after leaving a high-profile firm, state Rep. Darryl Rouson announced today that he has joined Clearwater-based personal injury firm Dolman Law Group.

    Rouson, a St. Petersburg Democrat, left his job at the Morgan & Morgan firm in May 2013. He had taken the opposite side of his boss John Morgan's very public support of a constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana. At the time, Rouson said he was leaving the firm to focus on his political career and both insisted the separation was amicable....