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Jane Castor adds to her team. This time it’s workforce development

Tampa’s new mayor creates another advisory body to help figure out the city’s next steps.
Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, shown here at the  LGBTA Democratic Caucus Summer Conference breakfast on Saturday, July 20, 2019 at Grand Hyatt in Tampa, is assembling a large, diverse group of advisers to help her chart her path as the city's 59th mayor.  ALLIE GOULDING   |   Times
Tampa Mayor Jane Castor, shown here at the LGBTA Democratic Caucus Summer Conference breakfast on Saturday, July 20, 2019 at Grand Hyatt in Tampa, is assembling a large, diverse group of advisers to help her chart her path as the city's 59th mayor. ALLIE GOULDING | Times
Published Jul. 24, 2019|Updated Jul. 25, 2019

TAMPA — Call it the summer (and fall) of service.

In recent weeks, Mayor Jane Castor has announced the teams of advisers who will help her figure out her next steps. The latest iteration was rolled out Tuesday: The Workforce Development advisory team. It was the third such assembly of counselors Castor was put together since she was sworn in on May 1.

The 12-member roster is heavy on clout, including African American leaders Chloe Coney and James Ransom; Hillsborough Community College’s Ybor City campus president, Ginger Clark; and Metropolitan Ministries’ president and CEO Tim Marks.

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The latest committee is being Branded as the “Transforming Tampa’s Tomorrow” initiative. The group will , serve together for about three months. They will join two other bodies christened by Castor: transportation and development services (permits, development agreements, etc.).

“Growing and encouraging local talent is the surest way to continue Tampa’s growth into the future,” Castor said in a statement. “This team has the reach, connections, and the will to position Tampa for an even brighter future. The collaborations, connections, and collective partnerships will create a network to uplift Tampa’s growing need for a talented workforce for decades to come.”

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The group’s first meeting will be held at 9 a.m. on July 29 at 201 N. Franklin St., Suite 2900.

Here are all the workforce development members:

● Karen Arnold: Senior vice president of investor relations of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce; also an active volunteer who served on the chamber’s board of directors and executive committee; graduated from the University of Tennessee with a degree in finance and banking.

● Robert Blount, Abe Brown Ministries; Blount partnered with the Hillsborough County Department of Human Services and the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Middle District of Florida to found the Hillsborough Ex-offender Re-entry Network (HERN).

● Team co-chair Ginger Clark: currently serves as vice president of workforce training, overseeing corporate and continuing education, adult basic education; and post-secondary vocational education programs; Clark has more than 25 years of experience in higher education, according to the city.

● Steve Cona: President and CEO of Associated Builders and Contractors Florida Gulf Coast Chapter; Hillsborough County School Board member; appointed by former Gov. Rick Scott to the Hillsborough Community College District Board of Trustees; and serves on the advisory board for Visit Tampa Bay, Hillsborough’s public-private tourism agency.

● Jesse Coraggio: Previously served as vice president of strategic impact at St. Petersburg College; former chair of the Florida College System’s Council of Instructional Affairs (CIA); former President of the Florida Association for Institutional Research (FAIR); also served as chair of the Seminole Educational Ecosystem and was a member of the Leadership Council for LEAP Tampa Bay. He holds a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction from USF.

● Team co-chair Tim Marks: Came to Metropolitan Ministries in 2006 after serving as executive director of community relations for the Boston Rescue Mission; prior to serving at the rescue mission, Marks worked in the corporate world for more than 21 years as an engineer, account executive and sales director, according to the city.

● Eunic Ortiz: National political communications lead at Service Employees International Union Florida; adjunct professor of communications at the University of Florida; former spokesperson and digital communications manager for the New York City Council.

● Mike Ramsey: Director general career, technical, & adult education, Hillsborough County Public Schools; former director of Workforce & Continuing Education; supervisor of Career and Technical Education Division; assistant principal at Tampa Bay Technical High School; worked as a teacher at Blake and Plant High Schools.

● James Ransom: Chairs the Tampa Organization of Black Affairs’ economic development committee.

● Cheryl Schroeder: Executive director, West Central Florida Labor Council, AFL-CIO.

Editor’s Note: Oscar Horton was incorrectly included in an early version of a city announcement listing committee members.


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