Two-time Key West City Manager Jim Scholl, a former commander of Naval Air Station Key West, is Monroe County’s newest Commissioner.
Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday appointed Scholl to the role. Scholl will finish out the term of Eddie Martinez, who resigned in December after his arrest in Hialeah on domestic battery charges.
Scholl previously served as City Manager from 2007 to 2012 and 2014 to 2019. He is a current member of the Rotary Club of Key West Sunrise and the Key West Military Affairs Committee and board president of the Sigsbee Charter School.
He holds a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies from Navy War College and a bachelor’s degree in zoology from Miami University in Ohio.
Scholl, who will hold his Commission seat until November 2024, began applying to fill Martinez’s seat the same day Martinez resigned.
He told Keys Weekly, “This is a bad situation for Monroe County. They’re going to need an eligible appointee who lives in the district, and I just feel like you should always give back if it’s needed and if you have the skill sets.”
Around the same time Scholl applied, fellow Republican Stephen Hammond expressed interest in the job and applied.
Hammond, a local Realtor, was appointed by former Gov. Charlie Crist and has served on the Lower Florida Keys Hospital District Board since 2008, according to Keys News. He has also held prominent roles with the Southernmost Republican Club and Monroe County Republican Executive Committee.
Other applicants included Steven Nekhaila and Edward Russell.
The announcement from the Governor’s Office did not include a reason why DeSantis chose Scholl over Hammond, Nekhaila and Russell, nor did it say why the seat took more than four months to fill.
Scholl’s appointment comes just over six months after DeSantis named former Key Largo Republican Rep. Holly Raschein to finish late Monroe Commissioner Mike Forster’s term on the county dais.