2 GOP Senators back Christine Miller for Hillsborough County Commission

christine miller plant city copy
'Hillsborough County needs business-minded, conservative leaders on the County Commission to help manage our county’s growth responsibly and keep taxes low, while improving our government services.'

Republican state Sens. Danny Burgess and Jay Collins are endorsing Christine Miller for Hillsborough County Commission.

Miller, President and CEO of the Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce, is running in District 6 currently held by term-limited Democrat Pat Kemp. Miller is one of two Republicans vying for the seat, with three Democrats also running — Mark Nash, Sean Shaw and Joseph Taylor. A third Republican had filed, Rico Smith, but has since withdrawn.

“Christine Miller is a friend and true conservative,” Burgess said. “I know with Christine on the County Commission, Hillsborough will have a results-oriented leader who will protect residents’ pocketbooks and be a voice of reason and common sense.”

As Chamber CEO, Miller works to promote commercial, industrial, agricultural and civic interests in Plant City and East Hillsborough County. She’s running to create a positive business climate and build on her experience promoting “economic prosperity through innovative leadership, advocacy, and collaborative community engagement,” according to her campaign announcement in January.

“Hillsborough County needs business-minded, conservative leaders on the County Commission to help manage our county’s growth responsibly and keep taxes low, while improving our government services,” Collins said. “Christine Miller knows what it takes to accomplish all three and I’m proud to endorse her for Hillsborough County Commission, District 6.”

Miller was part of the effort to establish the Plant City Partnership, which aligned the objectives of the Plant City Chamber, the Economic Development Corporation and Main Street.

She previously worked to overhaul the United Food Bank, exceeding her own personal goal of serving more than one million people in need.

Miller said it “means the world” to have “two individuals who work so hard and effectively for our county” supporting her. “I know we will work day and night to live up to the trust they’ve put in me and our campaign,” she added.

State Reps. Lawrence McClureTraci KosterKaren Gonzalez Pittman and Daniel Alvarez, all also Republicans, are also backing Miller, they previously announced.

Miller has an interesting résumé, including some unique accolades. She won first place in Dancing with the Locals and was featured in a chapter of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio’s book, “American Dreams.”

Miller serves on the Executive Board of the Florida Association of Chamber Professionals, on the group’s advocacy committee, and on the Student Affairs Development Council for Florida State University, the Plant City Economic Development Corporation Board, and Plant City Main Street Board (ex officio). She is a Leadership Plant City Alumni and serves on the Rotary Club Board.

The other Republican in the race, Jim Davison, entered the race about six months before Miller, in June of 2023. That gives him a jump on fundraising for the race. Davison has posted more than $18,000 raised as of this month, according to campaign finance reports with the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections. Miller, who didn’t enter the race until January, has not yet posted fundraising numbers.

Kemp is one of three Democrats on the four-member Commission. If a Republican wins her seat and Ken Hagan and Michael Owen, both Republicans, keep theirs this election cycle, the GOP majority would grow from 4-3 to 5-2. Hagan is so far unopposed, so his seat looks safe. Owen faces a no-party candidate who has so far not posted any fundraising numbers and had raised more than $173,000 for the race himself.

Hagan’s District 2 has a slight GOP voter registration advantage while Owen’s District 4 is deep red, with nearly 105,000 Republican voters to less than 68,000 Democrats.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected].

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