2015 Charter Review Commission Members

The Charter Review Commission has 13 members: One County Commissioner, One Constitutional Officer, One Member of the Legislative Delegation, One City Elected Official and Nine Citizens.

The following people served on the 2015 Charter Review Commission.

Dr. James Olliver

Chairman, Charter Review Commission

Dr. James Olliver retired as Provost (Chief Operating Officer) of the St. Petersburg College’s Seminole Campus where he also oversaw the College’s Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions.

Dr. Olliver has nearly 40 years of experience in a variety of higher education leadership positions in New York, Pennsylvania, Indiana, North Carolina and Florida. He served as Vice-President for Planning at SPC from 1989 to 1996, when he was named Provost. Prior to joining SPC staff, he served as Executive Vice President at Pfeiffer University in North Carolina. Dr. Olliver regularly presents at conferences, consults, and has authored numerous articles and book chapters.

He is also involved in a variety of civic organizations and activities, and in 2009, the Seminole Campus was named “Business of the Year” by the Greater Seminole Area Chamber of Commerce under his leadership. Dr. Olliver has been awarded the Chamber’s highest honor, the designation of “Mr. Seminole” in 2008 for his long-standing contributions to the community. Of significance is that Dr. Olliver served twice on the City of Seminole’s Charter Review Commission, most recently (in 2015) as the vice-chair. He is currently on the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and is Chair of the Building Committee.

Dr. Olliver received his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the State University of New York College at Buffalo, and his master’s and Ph. D. in higher education administration from Florida State University. He and his wife reside in Seminole.

Tom Steck

Vice Chairman, Charter Review Commission

A resident of Pinellas County for more than 50 years, Commission Member Tom Steck is the Vice Chairman of the Charter Review Commission. He has extensive experience working in various levels of government including National Aeronautics and Space Administration Headquarters, Florida Department of Children and Families and Pinellas County Department of Health and Social Services.

Mr. Steck holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Florida. Upon retirement, he obtained his Realtor’s license and holds the Graduate Realtor Institute (GRI) designation. He will begin a two-year term as a member of the Pinellas Realtor Organization Board of Directors in January, 2016.

Additionally, Mr. Steck serves on the Board of Directors for Community Action Stops Abuse (CASA). He has also worked with the United Way of the Suncoast reviewing agency funding requests, and has served as Chairman of the Pinellas County Democratic Executive Committee.

He is the proud father of another University of Florida graduate, who has followed in his footsteps by becoming a social worker and working for the government.

Larry Ahern

Florida House of Representatives Member, State District 66
Charter Review Commission Member

Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Representative Larry Ahern served the United States Air Force from 1973 – 1977, and moved to Florida in 1978. Prior to being elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2010, Mr. Ahern was appointed by the Mayor to the City of St. Petersburg Nuisance Abatement Board in 2008, serving for two years until 2010. During this same time period, he served on the Pinellas County Swimming Pool Review and Examining Board, via an appointment by the County Commissioner.

Rep. Ahern currently serves a number of organizations including the Greater Seminole Area Chamber of Commerce, Pinellas County Sheriff’s Advisory Board, and Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America. Previously, he has participated in both the Central Pinellas Chamber of Commerce and the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce. He has won numerous awards including the Fabulous Floridian Certificate of Recognition from the City of Seminole and the Legislative Appreciation Award for the Suncoast League of Cities.

Representative Larry Ahern currently resides in Seminole with his wife Maureen and has three children, Lauren, Lindsay, and Sarah.

Johnny Bardine

Charter Review Commission Member

After receiving his undergraduate degree from American University and prior to attending law school at Stetson University, Mr. Bardine worked for the Magistrate’s Court in Camberwell Green in London and then taught English in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan, for a year. Upon receiving his Juris Doctorate, Mr. Bardine worked as a law clerk in Prague, Czech Republic, where he was involved in international commercial arbitration and cross-national contractual disputes. He returned to the United States in 2007 where he worked as a legal consultant for a nationally-renowned criminal justice consulting firm, specializing in the area of pretrial rights and jail overcrowding.

Recognizing the impact of the current economic issues facing our community, Mr. Bardine established The Law Office of Johnny J. Bardine, P.A., with the intent to provide legal representation to individuals, families, and business owners who need an attorney to help protect their interests and assets. He is currently a member of the Florida Bar Association, the American Bar Association, and the St. Petersburg Bar Association and is an admitted member of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

Mr. Bardine is an active member of the community, participating in a number of organizations including membership in the St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce, the St Petersburg Civil Service Board, the Pier Advisory Task Force for the City of St. Petersburg, and as a Board Member of Faith House.

Keisha Bell

Charter Review Commission Member

Keisha Bell graduated from the University of Central Florida with a BA in Psychology, and earned her Juris Doctorate from the Florida State University College of Law. She currently practices law in the Tampa Bay area, primarily in the areas of Personal Injury, Workers’ Compensation, and Family.

As a published author of a book entitled, “Emerging Free”, Ms. Bell has directed, facilitated, and created programs for youth and adults on health, social justice, and faith on a federal and local level for the National Institutes of Health, the City of Saint Petersburg, a university, numerous schools throughout Pinellas and Hillsborough Counties, and several churches.

She is a chapter member of the Florida Association of Women Lawyers in Pinellas County and a standing committee member in the Florida Bar Association for Addressing Legal Needs of Children. Ms. Bell has previously held Board Member positions with both the James B. Sanderlin Neighborhood Family Center and the Pinellas Council on Adoptable Children.

Keisha Bell has been an active participant in seminars and workshops where she has been a presenter, including the Domestic Violence and Health Disparities: Connected or Coincidence via Juvenile Welfare Board and the “Pathways to Presidency or To Prison” in 2009.

Ms. Bell enjoys innovation, writing, traveling, and learning new things. Her second book is currently being edited.

Sandra Bradbury

Mayor of Pinellas Park
Charter Review Commission Member

Sandra Bradbury was elected to City Council in March of 2002, and re-elected in 2006 and 2010. She was elected as Mayor in 2012 and re-elected as Mayor in 2014. Mayor Bradbury has been a resident of Pinellas Park since 1968 and has been very active in our community. She has served as an ambassador for the Pinellas Park/Gateway Chamber of Commerce and as Chair for the Suncoast League of Cities. She is a member of the Mayor’s Council of Pinellas County. Tampa Bay Business Journal recognized Mayor Bradbury’s commitment to public service at its 2008 Business Woman of the Year Awards Ceremony. She has served as a mentor to students at Skyview Elementary School and has assisted with fundraising activities for the Pinellas Park Police Explorers Post #912.

Mayor Bradbury has been involved with Community Spirit in the Park, a non-profit organization that purchases, maintains and installs holiday decorations along the City’s main roads, including lighted Christmas decorations and American flag displays. Sandy was appointed to the Pinellas Park Board of Adjustment in 1999 and served until her election to Council. She has received recognition from the Chamber of Commerce for her efforts in economic development and from the United States Marine Corps for volunteer services during Operation Desert Storm and attributes her sense of community and interest in public service to her father, former Mayor Cecil Bradbury and her mother, Margaret.

Ken Burke

Clerk of the Circuit Court and Pinellas County Comptroller
Charter Review Commission Member

Ken Burke serves as the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller for Pinellas County, Florida. Mr. Burke is deeply rooted in the county given his local schooling and experiences as a CPA, law firm administrator and College Board Chairman. In November 2004, Pinellas County voters recognized Mr. Burke’s long list of qualifications and elected him to serve as the Clerk. He was re-elected without opposition in 2008 and again in 2012.

Mr. Burke’s impressive array of civic involvement includes serving on the Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College as well as the Special Presidential Committee on Technology/Office Tools & Resources for the Florida Bar, Chair of the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT), President of the Florida Court Clerks and Comptrollers, elected member of the Florida Government Finance Officers Association (FGFOA) Board of Directors and Vice-Chair of the Florida Clerks of Court Operations Corporation (CCOC) Legislative Committee just to name a few.

In light of his monumental civic contribution, Mr. Burke was named “Mr. Seminole” in 1999 by his community. Additionally, he was appointed to the Florida Supreme Court’s Standing Committee on Fairness and Diversity; appointed by Governor Rick Scott to the Higher Education Coordinating Council and was elected to the 2015-2016 FGFOA Board of Directors. Most recently, he was also appointed by the Pinellas County Commission to be a member of the Charter Review Commission (CRC).

Mr. Burke and his wife, Cecilia (Reese) have three children – Catherine, Patrick and Brendan.

Ashley Caron

CRC Commission Member

Ashley Caron is the Associate Director of Accreditation and Assessment at St. Petersburg College (SPC). Since joining SPC in 2007, she has worked with the College of Education and the Office of Academic Effectiveness and Assessment, focusing on institutional effectiveness through academic and departmental program review and assessment, specialized accreditation compliance and reporting, and grant program evaluation.

A native Floridian from Pinellas County, Ms. Caron received a BA in Political Science from the University of South Florida and MA in Survey Research from the University of Connecticut. She currently resides in Largo with her husband Jim and their three dogs.

Barclay Harless

Charter Review Commission Member

Barclay Harless was appointed to the Charter Review Commission by County Commission Chairman John Morroni in June 2015. A fifth-generation Floridian with experience in both the public and private sectors, Mr. Harless is a business development officer at St. Petersburg-based C1 Bank. Prior to this role, he served as a legislative assistant in Tallahassee for State Representative Darryl Rouson where he worked on criminal justice policies and appropriations in the state budget.

When not working, Mr. Harless stays involved in the community. He is a board member of R’Club Childcare, Inc., the largest not-for-profit early learning agency in Pinellas County and also chairs the legislative committee for the St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce. He has also volunteered for the American Cancer Society and the Suncoast United Way.

Mr. Harless graduated with dual Bachelors of Arts degrees in History and Political Science from the University of South Florida where he served as student body president in 2007. He resides in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Janet C. Long

Pinellas County Commissioner, County District 1
Charter Review Commission Member

Commissioner Long is no stranger to public service. Her career in government began as a Legislative Aide working in the Old Capitol. The year was 1975 – before word processing, computers, copy machines, fax machines and electronic communication. It was a time when the legislative process was all done by hand.

In 1980, Commissioner Long served as the Assistant to the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation until 1986 when she was appointed by Commissioner Bill Gunter as the Deputy Insurance Commissioner for the Florida Department of Insurance with primary day to day management and oversight of the Regional Office located in Pinellas County. She was reappointed by Commissioner Tom Gallagher and again by Commissioner Bill Nelson.

In 2002, Commissioner Long was elected to the Seminole City Council and elected again in 2004 without opposition. In 2006, she was elected as a Democrat to the Florida House of Representatives from District 51 and served through 2010. In her first year of office, she managed to pass five of her six bills. She has created an electronic newsletter which keeps her constituents abreast of her activities and those of the legislature. In an effort to ensure that her constituents have a voice, she has held various town hall meetings in her district and around Pinellas County on property taxes, the Lealman fire district and the Pinellas Park Water Management District.

While a member of the Florida Legislature she served on the Military & Veterans Affairs Policy Committee; the Economic Development & Community Affairs Policy Council; the General Government Policy Council; the Insurance, Business & Financial Affairs Policy Committee; the Education K-12 Committee and the Transportation & Economic Development Appropriations Committee.

Janet Long was elected countywide to a seat on the Pinellas County Commission in 2012. Commissioner Long serves on the Industry Certification Training Center board of Directors, the Homeless Leadership Board, the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA), the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council and the Health and Human Services Leadership board. In addition to her Pinellas County Board of County Commissioner appointments; she also serves as Vice President for the Suncoast Tiger Bay Club, and is on the Largo Medical Center Board of Trustees and the Clearwater Central Catholic Advisory Board.

Commissioner Long has been married to her husband, Richard, a retired officer with the Seminole Fire Department, for 37 years. Her daughter is a nurse. Her oldest son was a United States Army Captain and Apache Pilot who recently returned from combat duty in Afghanistan. He now flies for a private company. Her youngest son is a police officer with the City of Clearwater and an Army veteran. She has a daughter-in-law who is a police officer with the City of Clearwater and a Navy veteran and another daughter-in-law who was a state prosecutor for seven years and now works in a private law firm in St. Petersburg. Commissioner Long also has three grandchildren.

Todd Pressman

Charter Review Commission Member

Todd Pressman expertise lies in land use and zoning consulting, as well as all areas of city and county lobbying. As the principal of Pressman and Associates, Inc., Todd Pressman, has served by political appointment to many land use jurisdictional boards. This includes the Southwest Florida Water Management District Governing Board, having been reappointed by Governor Crist after serving through two appointments by Governor Jeb Bush.

Mr. Pressman is currently serving by appointment to the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council, and the Hillsborough County Commission to the Hillsborough County Code Enforcement Board. He has also acted and worked with State Senator Jack Latvalla’s U.S. 19 task Force and developed and instituted the Hillsborough County 5-to-1 zoning task force.

Dr. James “Jim” Sewell

Charter Review Commission Member

Dr. Jim Sewell (BS ’71, MS ’75, PhD ’80) retired from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in February 2005. During his tenure with FDLE, he held a variety of positions, including Assistant Commissioner; Deputy Commissioner; Regional Director of FDLE’s Tampa Bay Regional Operations Center; Director of the Division of Criminal Justice Information Systems; and Director of the Florida Criminal Justice Executive Institute. He also served as Chief of Police for the City of Gulfport, Florida, for nearly five years. Additionally, he held positions with the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and The Florida State University Department of Public Safety, where he began his law enforcement career in 1973. He currently provides management and training consulting services for Florida’s Department of Children and Families, and other agencies.

Dr. Sewell received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in Criminology from The Florida State University. Active in community affairs, he has served as a gubernatorial appointee on the Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County, as Chair of the St. Petersburg Civil Service Board, and on the boards of directors of a number of community not-for-profit organizations, including Pinellas Association of Retarded Children, Drug Free America Foundation, Pinellas Marine Institute, and Community Action Stops Abuse. He is a Life Member of both the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Florida Police Chiefs Association (FPCA). In 2010, he received the FPCA’s Wall of Honor Award for contributions to the Association and the law enforcement profession.

Joshua Shulman

Charter Review Commission Member

As a Vice President, Investments and Financial Advisor for Wells Fargo, Joshua Shulman works closely with individuals and families who are experiencing a change to their personal financial picture.

Mr. Shulman received his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pittsburgh and his Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Central Florida. He has worked in the financial services industry for eleven years with a philosophy in developing an overall strategy, by understanding the full financial picture and then working on an implementation strategy to address the concerns that arise. He is actively involved in the local community, participating in Leadership St. Pete, the St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce, the Florida Aquarium, and the Albert Whitted Airport Preservation Society.

Mr. Shulman has lived in Pinellas County since 1998. He currently lives in St. Petersburg with his wife Jennifer and his yellow lab Nilla.