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TALLAHASSEE, FLA. 1/8/19-Gov. Rick Scott, right, wife Ann and Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, left, are recognized at the start of the inauguration for Gov. Ron DeSantis, Tuesday in Tallahassee. COLIN HACKLEY PHOTO


Five join Rick Scott’s senior staff

A chunk of political and governmental personnel from U.S. Sen. Rick Scott’s eight-year stint as the state’s chief executive will continue to have his ear at the federal level.

Five new hires to Scott’s Senate office were provided to Florida Politics on Monday. 

The additions follow Scott’s November hire of Jackie Schutz Zeckman as Chief of Staff. She formerly served in the same role when Scott was Governor.

Serving as Scott’s Deputy Chief of Staff is Craig Carbone, who like Schutz Zeckman had the same job at some point during Scott’s time as Governor. Carbone also worked as a political director for Scott’s Senate bid.

Chris Hartline is Scott’s Communications Director. He had served as a spokesman for Scott’s Senate campaign.


Scott picked as his State Director Leda Williams Kelly, who had served as Deputy Director of External Affairs for then-Gov. Scott.

Paul Bonicelli, Collin Lomagistro, and Christine Diaz join Scott’s Senate office as Senior Policy Advisers.

Lomagistro worked as a finance director for Scott’s campaign and served as Director of Appointments and Deputy Legislative Affairs Director during Scott’s time as Governor.

Notably, Diaz and Bonicelli both worked at the federal level during former President George W. Bush’s tenure.

Bonicelli had served in the Bush administration as an Assistant Administrator at the United States Agency for International Development. And Diaz, who has worked as Scott’s “D.C. Director” in the past, boasts Department of Homeland Security experience between 2005 and 2009.

“Their experience and their energy will be invaluable to me as I begin the process of representing Florida in the United States Senate,” Scott said in a statement announcing the hires. “We look forward to hitting the ground running and fixing problems for the people of Florida.”

Written By

Danny McAuliffe is a Tallahassee correspondent for Florida Politics. He is a graduate of Florida State University, where he served as the editor of the FSView & Florida Flambeau. He is a lifelong Floridian and indulges in swimming, hiking, running and memes when the news cycle permits. Reach him at dmcauliffe500@gmail.com.

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