Between his election campaign fund and his election communications organization called Tampa’s Bright Future, David Straz Jr. spent $4.9 million, mostly his own money, in his unsuccessful bid to be Tampa mayor. (Through April 18)
Here’s a breakdown of who got most of that money. The list is headed by Fletcher Ridge and Company, a political communications strategy firm. Its owner, Bill Fletcher, ran Straz’s campaign and made decisions about how campaign funds should be spent, according to several members of the campaign team.
1. Fletcher Ridge & Company
The Nashville based firm owned by Bill Fletcher purchased TV, radio and digital advertisements for the Straz campaign. Campaign insiders said they were never told what percentage Fletcher’s company took for booking ads.
The Washington, D.C., canvassing firm started work on the campaign in January. Its previous clients include Hillary Clinton for President and the National Democratic Council.
3. The Tyson Organization
National communication strategy firm headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, whose clients include former U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson. Conducted phone banking, telephone town halls, consulting, surveys and data management for Straz.
4. Momentum Strategy Group
Florida consulting firm founded by Brock Mikosky whose clients include U.S. Rep. Ross Spano, R-Dover.
5. The Kitchens Group
Orlando public opinion firm billed Straz for surveys, focus groups and poll tracking.
6. E Allan Brandon
Tennessee firm paid for design, printing, postage.
7. Postage costs
8. Gunn Printing
Straz’s campaign was a windfall for this Tampa printing firm.
9. Jarrod Holbrook
Former local TV news reporter worked as Straz’s communications director. He was paid $10,000 per month.
10. Mark Hanisee
Former Hillsborough County Democratic Party executive director worked as campaign manager but said most decisions were made by Fletcher. Hanisee was paid $5,300 per month.
11. Meri Forte-Namuj
Campaign deputy manager who also ran campaign office.
12. Jacqueline Frankovich
Campaign director/scheduler whose experience included a brief spell on Andrew Gillum’s gubernatorial campaign.
13. Impact Politics
Firm based in Weston and run by Brian Franklin was paid for advertising buys and updates to website.
14. Political Victory Company
Local political mailer firm run by La Gaceta owner and publisher Patrick Manteiga was paid for mailers, mail management and consulting.
Source: Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections