JULIAN & KIM MACQUEEN A.A. Dixon Charter School of Excellence is gaining more community support every week. The Innisfree Hotels founder and CEO recently joined his wife, who serves on the school’s board, in adopting the school that is trying to improve the education of inner-city students that the Escambia Public School District has failed. Over 30 Innisfree employees participated in the announcement to the students on Sept. 30.
JOE SCARBOROUGH Pensacola’s native son is returning to his hometown to help the Pensacola State College Annual Fund. Scarborough is Pensacola’s biggest cheerleader, continually mentioning our city on his show “Morning Joe.” During the BP spill last year, he broadcast from here to help draw attention to our rapidly shrinking summer tourist season. Thanks, Joe.
DON GAETZ Our state senator from Niceville will be the Florida Senate president for 2013-14. When he accepted the election by his peers, Gaetz set as two of his goals– training in higher education on the skills needed by industries moving to the state and making Florida a “safe harbor” for business to expand. The last Northwest Florida politician to be elected senate president was W. D. Childers, 1981-82.
PENSACOLA CITY COUNCIL Governance by a nine-member committee doesn’t work, which is why the Pensacola voters passed the new charter. Apparently, hiring by committee doesn’t work either. Last week, the Council’s choice for its council executive, Scotty Davis, turned down the job, citing to city staff that council members privately had described the position differently.
TEAM SANTA ROSA Two years ago, TEAM Santa Rosa was the role model for economic development. Leaders questioned why the Pensacola Chamber couldn’t be as effective in luring corporations. Its executive director, Cindy Anderson, was nearly hired away by then-Escambia County Administrator Bob McLaughlin to be his deputy administrator for economic development. Now Santa Rosa County commissioners wonder, because of a federal investigation into Team Santa Rosa and the county, if Anderson should keep her job and should the organization be abolished.
ROGER MAYO The Escambia High athletic director had a bad week. His new hire for football coach, Scott Anderson, and Assistant Coach Tim Jansky were placed on administrative leave with pay after a criminal investigation was launched into whether the coaches tried to intimidate a student into dropping battery charges against a football player.