Mayor-elect Donna Deegan announces committee leaders and focus areas

JACKSONVILLE, Fla — As part of the transition process, Mayor-Elect Donna Deegan’s transition team is reviewing opportunities and challenges currently facing Jacksonville.

Today, she is announcing the committees and leaders who will identify policy solutions that, “give every person the opportunity to have a good quality of life.”


The areas of focus include infrastructure; health; economic development; public safety; arts culture, and entertainment; constituency and community outreach; and military and veterans.

“I’m excited to announce our policy and outreach committees that will develop plans to move forward our vision of a healthy, safe, resilient, inclusive, and innovative city that works for all of us,” said Mayor-Elect Donna Deegan. “These efforts are being led by collaborative leaders who bring deep community roots and long-established records of service.”

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  • The Infrastructure Committee will focus on neighborhoods, the downtown riverfront, parks and recreation, resiliency, affordable housing, and homelessness. This focus area will be led by former Jacksonville City Council Member, construction business owner and restaurateur Garrett Dennis.
  • The Health Committee will focus on the appointment of a Chief Health Officer; maternal and children’s health; primary and dental care access; mental health and addiction; elder care; social determinants of health; and health insurance. This focus area will be led by a nationally recognized financial advisor and physician Carolyn McClanahan, M.D., CFP.
  • The Economic Development Committee will focus on permitting, ladders for small businesses, talent development, and downtown development. This focus area will be led by JEA Director of Economic Development Ed Randolph who previously served as the city’s Director of Business Development.
  • The Public Safety Committee will focus on revisiting the Jacksonville Journey; a city-wide effort to boost literacy; and criminal justice reform. This focus area will be led by the former Education Chair of the Jacksonville Journey, past Duval School Board Chairman, and attorney W.C. Gentry.
  • The Arts, Culture, and Entertainment Committee will focus on retaining local art talent, public and private programming, art in public spaces and buildings, and attracting more public events. This focus area will be led by Yellow House Founder and Director Hope McMath.
  • The Constituency and Community Outreach Committee will focus on diversity, youth outreach, faith outreach, higher education, and non-profits. This focus area will be led by the University of North Florida Coggin College of Business Director of Graduate Programs and Professor of Finance Parvez Ahmed.

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The Military and Veterans Committee will focus on the main issues and concerns facing our local military members, establishing a veterans community center, and the need for more access to veteran activities and services in Jacksonville. This focus area will be led by retired U.S. Navy Vice Admiral Rick Snyder

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