Meet The 9 Applicants Vying To Fill Jacksonville City Council Vacancies

Jun 6, 2018

A former state lawmaker, a former school board member and a banking executive are among the nine individuals who want to fill the vacancies created by the suspension of two Jacksonville City Council members.

The search for replacements began on Saturday, a day after Gov. Rick Scott suspended City Council members Katrina Brown and Reggie Brown in response to a 38-count federal indictment charging both with money laundering and fraud linked to a doomed barbecue sauce plant.

Scott has the power to appoint replacements to serve in their stead. The replacement council members  would likely remain in office until their terms expire in July 2019, or the federal case against the Browns runs its course, whichever comes first.

On Tuesday, the governor's office released a list of the people who have applied so far. Below is a list of those nine applicants that was acquired by our News4Jax partner:

  • Darrin Williams is the recreation planning and grants coordinator for the city of Jacksonville. Gov. Scott appointed Williams in January to serve on the state Board of Funeral, Cemetery, and Consumer Services.
  • Terrance Brisbane is employed by BBVA Compass as its vice president of community development mortgage banking. The Florida A&M University graduate also serves as a pastor at Higher Ground Church of God in Christ on Van Gundy Road.
  • Brenda Priestly Jackson is an attorney, the founder of a tutoring company and a former chairwoman of the Duval County School Board who previously taught at Douglas Anderson School of the Arts and Stanton College Preparatory School.
  • Ju'Coby Pittman is the chief executive officer and president of the Clara White Mission, a position she has held for the past 22 years. The organization provides job training and housing for veterans, ex-offenders and low-income residents.
  • Tameka Holly is a community activist and professional consultant, whose website states she has over 10 years of executive management and business operations experience. She filed papers to challenge Katrina Brown for the District 8 seat before the indictment.
  • Celestine Mills, who filed to challenge Reggie Brown for the District 10 seat prior to his indictment, is a financial services professional, according to her LinkedIn page. The page says she currently works as a prosthetic coordinator for One Call Care Management.
  • Terry Fields is a former state representative who was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2000 before he termed out in 2008. He previously served as a Jacksonville City Council member and Civil Service Board member.
  • Angela Nixon is a community organizer, political operative and public affairs professional. She previously worked on Bernie Sanders' 2016 presidential campaign and on former Mayor Alvin Brown's unsuccessful re-election campaign.
  • Christopher Pendleton is a funeral service associate for Beaches Chapel by Hardage-Giddens. He previously worked as a senior court bailiff. He has held a range of roles and currently sits on the community board at UF Health Jacksonville.

News4Jax spoke to Keshan Gainey Chambliss who applied Tuesday to become a candidate for council replacement.

"You want to have continuity of leadership, and there are still situations going on even while they're on suspension," Chambliss said. "I think was a good move for the governor to make a decision ... to not leave the seat unattended."

As of Tuesday, there was no word when Governor Scott would make his decisions.