Longtime Jacksonville Political Strategist Susie Wiles To Lead DeSantis Transition

Nov 8, 2018

Susie Wiles, who chaired Republican Ron DeSantis’ successful gubernatorial campaign, will oversee his transition into the top statewide office.

Wiles, who also managed Gov. Rick Scott’s successful 2010 campaign and played a key role in 2016 for President Donald Trump in Florida, will be the DeSantis transition team’s executive director.

DeSantis’ former chief of staff, Scott Parkinson, will serve as deputy executive director.

“I’m confident these individuals will ensure our administration is ready to lead on day one to make our state cleaner, safer and stronger for all Floridians,” DeSantis, who defeated Democrat Andrew Gillum on Tuesday, said in a prepared statement.

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Wiles is well known in Jacksonville’s political community. She previously served as chief of communications for former Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton and as chief of staff for former Mayor John Delaney.

Chairing the DeSantis transition team are Congressman Matt Gaetz, state House Speaker Richard Corcoran, former U.S. Sen. George LeMieux and former Lt. Gov. Toni Jennings. Gaetz, a former state legislator from Fort Walton Beach, was a prominent DeSantis supporter during the campaign.

LeMieux served as chief of staff to former Gov. Charlie Crist, who appointed LeMieux to the U.S. Senate. Jennings, a lieutenant governor under former Gov. Jeb Bush, also served two terms as state Senate president. DeSantis will take office Jan. 8, succeeding Scott.