Tampa readies for its 59th mayor

Jane Castor’s swearing-in ceremony at Armature Works Wednesday morning will feature plenty of women’s voices. An all-male City Council will also take their oath of office.
Published April 30, 2019|Updated May 1, 2019

Jane Castor, the 59-year-old former police chief, will become the city’s 59th mayor on Wednesday morning in a ceremony highlighting women’s voices.

Castor will be sworn in to office at Armature Works by U.S. District Judge Mary Scriven. Tampa (and Cuban born) poet Silvia Curbelo will read “Notes on Courage” during a “Words of Wisdom” segment. And Barie Fry, the young daughter of Hillsborough County women’s advocate Yvonne Fry, will sing the national anthem.

Scriven will also swear in the new Tampa City Council. Returning members Charlie Miranda, Luis Viera and Guido Maniscalco and new members Bill Carlson, Orlando Gudes, Joe Citro and John Dingfelder.

Later in the day, council members will chose their chairman, a process that has already been rumored to include Maniscalco, Viera and Miranda as possible picks to lead the first all-male council since 1971.

READ MORE: Tampa will have an all-male City Council

Castor succeeds term-limited Bob Buckhorn, who has served as mayor since 2011. Buckhorn kept Castor as police chief for four years after her initial selection by former mayor Pam Iorio in 2009.

Buckhorn recently dedicated a parking garage in Channelside to Iorio, renaming the former South Regional Parking Garage, 301 Channelside Dr., in honor of his predecessor, who served from 2003 to 2011.

Buckhorn, Iorio, Dick Greco Sr., and Bob Martinez all endorsed Castor in the runoff election against David Straz.

READ MORE: Tampa’s current and past mayors agree: Jane Castor should be the city’s next CEO

St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman and Clearwater Mayor George Cretekos are among other local dignitaries expected to attend the 10 a.m. event on the new social and entertainment venue on the Hillsborough River in Tampa Heights, just north of downtown.

Castor’s history-making April 23 landslide win put her in the national spotlight at Tampa Bay’s first out mayor. LGBTQ advocates across the country have cheered her taking over the mayor’s office in Florida’s third-largest city.

READ MORE: Castor’s win places her in national spotlight

Castor will make her own remarks Wednesday during the program. City spokeswoman Ashley Bauman said the theme will be “Tampa’s next chapter."

During the campaign, Castor, a Tampa native and mother of two college-age sons who lives in Seminole Heights with her partner Ana Cruz, often said she expects the city to change more in the next 10 years than it has in her entire lifetime.