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- Tampa Bay Host Committee
101 E Kennedy Blvd Ste 3300 Tampa, FL 33602.
...incorporated March 26, 2010; filed statement of organization with the FEC on May 19. ...501(c)(3)
(page updated May 23, 2013)
...June 25, 2012: "Largest
"...approximately $49 million in private donations needed to host the Convention."
Chairman of the Board Al Austin
(announced May 21, 2010) CEO of A.S. Austin
estate development corporation; Austin was a pioneer developer
of the Westshore Business District of Tampa.
He has been a delegate or alternate to every Republican
National Convention and has served in leadership roles in every
presidential campaign in Florida since 1972.
Co-Chair Don DeFosset
(announced vice chair May 21, 2010) Chairman and CEO of DJD Group, an investment firm headquarted in Tampa (inc. 2009); Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The University of Tampa. DeFosset previously served as Chairman (2002-05), President and CEO (2000-05) of Walter Industries, Inc. Executive positions at Dura Automotive Systems, Inc.; Navistar International Corporation; AlliedSignal, Inc.; Mack Trucks, Inc.. Started out at Rockwell International, where he worked for 18 years. M.B.A. from Harvard University, 1974; B.S. in industrial engineering from Purdue University. Grew up in St. Louis, MO. >
Co-Chair Dick Beard (Richard A. Beard III)
(announced vice chair, treasurer and secretary May 21, 2010) 36 years experience in real estate development. President of R.A. Beard Company, a real estate investment company, since 1995. A partner of Paragon Group, which developed major projects in downtown Tampa in the 1980s. Beard moved from Dallas in 1972. He was founding chairman of the Board of Trustees for the University of South Florida. Bachelor's degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology, 1967.
President and CEO Ken Jones
(announced May 21, 2010...oversees day to day
operations) Senior Vice President, Managing
Director and General Counsel of Communications Equity Associates.
Chief Legal Counsel and Senior Staff member for then U.S. Senate
Majority Leader Trent Lott and the Senate Rules & Administration
Committee. In 2005 Jones also served as General Counsel to the
55th Presidential Inaugural Committee. Attorney at Patton Boggs
in Washington, DC. Chief Counsel to the 54th Presidential
Inaugural Committee, 2001. Counsel for the Bush-Cheney campaign
in Palm Beach following the 2000 campaign. Deputy Counsel at the
RNC. J.D. from University of Florida; undergraduate degree in
communications and criminology from Florida State University. >
General Counsel Bob Grammig
Partner at Holland & Knight. J.D. from
Harvard Law School;
M.A. in diplomatic history and B.A. from University of Pennsylvania.
Executive Committee: Al Austin, Dick Beard, Don DeFosset, Ken Jones, Bob Grammig, former Gov. Bob Martinez, Paul Catoe, Ron Ciganek, Bill Edwards, Steve Mitchell, Kathleen Shanahan, Robert Watkins
Board of Governors:
Carlos Alfonso, Mayor Rick Baker, William Barker,
Thilo Best, Mike Corcoran, Ronnie Duncan, Tom DuPont, Maryann Ferenc,
Aaron Fodiman, Maritza Rovira Forino, Judy Genshaft, Richard Gonzmart,
Mayor Dick Greco, Oscar Horton, Tom James, Joe Kadow, Tod Leiweke,
Sandy MacKinnon, Patrick Manteiga, Rick Michaels, John Ramil, Michelle
Robinson, Gary Sasso, John Scheuler, Ambassador Mel Sembler, Curtis
Stokes, Chuck Sykes, Paul Tash, Dr. R. Vijay, Jeff Vinik, Joe Williams
Chief Operating Officer Matt Becker
(Sept. 2011) Vice president at Regions Bank in
St. Petersburg, July 2006-Aug. 2011. Deputy chief of staff and
White House liaison at the
Administration under President George W. Bush, 2003-06. Deputy
director of the Secretary's Commission on Opportunity in Athletics at
the U.S. Department of Education, 2001-03. Managed the
Michigan GOP’s Victory 2000 campaign. Michigan political director
on Forbes 2000, May 1999-Feb. 2000. Executive clerk in the U.S.
House of Representatives' Legislative Resource Center, 1998-99.
Area manager Bil Mar Foods/Sara Lee, 1995-97. B.A. in political
and constitutional democracy from Michigan State University,
1995. From Grand Rapids, MI.
Chief Financial Officer Paul Watson
Previously chief financial officer and chief operating officer of the Free Enterprise Nation Inc., a non-partisan educational and advocacy organization. From 1996-2008 chief financial officer and chief operating officer and senior financial analyst (1997-1999) of Clearwater Funds, Inc., a group of private hedge funds. Started career at Arthur Andersen LLP in the New York City Financial Services Division. B.S. in accounting from St. John's University in New York, 1992. Originally from Belfast, N. Ireland; immigrated to the United States in 1988.
Director of Events and Hospitality Amanda Whitelaw
(June 2011) Director of volunteer services for the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Host Committee starting Sept. 2009. Volunteer services coordinator for the Tampa Bay Super Bowl Host Committee, and event staff supervisor for the Tampa Sports Authority at Raymond James Stadium, 2008-09. Graduate of the Florida State University, College of Business, 2007.
Deputy Director of Events & Volunteers
Administrative coordinator (April 2011-March 2012) and
assistant to the president and CEO (May 2006-Feb. 2011) of the St.
Petersburg Area Chamber
of Commerce. Special assistant to the
first two strong mayors for the City of St. Petersburg,
degree in public administration from the University of South
Florida, 2002; bachelor’s degree in English from Florida State
University, 1990. Native of St. Petersburg, FL.
Manager of Events Whitney Wilkins
(May 2011) Marketing specialist at Prime
Vendor Inc. and Lighthouse Foods, 2009-11. B.S. in advertising
from University of Florida, 2009.
Event Coordinator Heather Ridgeway
(Jan. 2012) Server at Beef 'O' Brady's
Restaurants, 2011-12. B.S. in event management from University of
Central Florida, 2011; A.A. from Florida State University.
Florida Finance Director and Director of Donor Programs Sarah Collins
Previously director of development for American Solutions. She has also worked as the regional finance director for the 2008 McCain-Palin campaign, overseeing several Southern states, including Florida, Georgia and Texas and as the finance director for the Rudy Giuliani Presidential Committee in Georgia. Bachelor's degree in consumer sciences from the University of Mississippi. Native of Madison, GA.
Director of Economic Development
Founder and president of Unico Strategies.
of minority communications and outreach for the Office of
Florida Senate President Mike Haridopolos. Director of
legislative affairs and special projects for the 2011 Florida
Inaugural Committee. Political director on Rick Scott for
Governor, 2010; advisor for campaigns of Gov. Charlie Crist,
and Gov. Jeb Bush, and the presidential campaigns of Sen. John McCain,
and very briefly of Herman Cain. Executive assistant to the
Figg Engineering. Associate’s degree in education from Miami Dade
Community College. Native of Miami, FL.
Manager of Community Programs Sara Palmer
(Aug. 2011) Associate at Atlantic American
April-July 2011. Digital marketing coordinator at
RegisterPatient.com, Sept.-Dec. 2010. M.A. in international
business from University of Florida, 2010; B.S. in marketing from
University of Florida, 2009.
Communications Director Aileen Rodriguez
Founder/principal at AR Public Affairs & Strategic
Tampa. Gulf Coast regional director for U.S. Sen. Mel
Martinez. Community liaison for the H. Lee Moffit Cancer Center
and Research Institute. B.A. in organizational and interpersonal
communications from the University of South Florida. Born in San
Juan Puerto Rico.
Deputy Communications Director Jessica R.
(March 2012) Previously communications and marketing specialist for the
Florida College of Business, July 2010-March 2012. Account executive at
the public affairs
firm The John Truscott Group in Lansing, MI late 2008-ea. 2009.
Media relations coordinator at the Michigan Republican Party,
2008. Medical and health reporter
WILX-TV in Lansing, MI, 2006-08. Master’s degree in broadcast
journalism from Syracuse University, 2005; bachelor’s degree in mass
media studies from Florida State
University, 2002. Native of Pensacola, FL.
Executive Assistant to Ken Jones Gwen Finn
Executive assistant/office manager at Pujari Center,
2011. Owner of Wedding Library, an event planning and retail
business, 2001-04. Executive assistant to the vice president of
human resoources at Sykes Enterprises, 1998-2001. Executive
assistant at Quality Distribution, 2000. Legal secretary at
Holland & Knight, 1989-98.
Office Manager Aubrey Lospinoso
(Feb. 2012) Office coordinator/guest
relations at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company in Orlando, 2006-11.
Attended Valencia College.
Deputy Director Krista Soroka
(July 2010-June 2011) Senior vice president of
marketing at EventMakers Corp, April 2009-June 2010. Director of
events and hospitality for the Tampa Bay Super Bowl Host Committee,
2007-09. Film commissioner for the Tampa Bay Film Commission,
2004-07. President of Wonder Events, 2001-04. Director of
events and public relations for the Tampa Bay Super Bowl Task Force,
2000-01. Director of public relations at the Governor's Office of
Physical Fitness and Sports, 1997-99. Degree in sports management
from the University of Michigan.