This award honors a current or former government official or civic leader for improving government through leadership and vision

The award is typically presented at a regular Board meeting in April.

About the 2024 recipient

Doretha Wynn Edgecomb

2024 Ellsworth G. Simmons Good Government Award recipient

A native of Tampa, Doretha Edgecomb worked as an educator at Hillsborough County Public Schools, a prosperous career that spanned over 50 years. She served in numerous capacities, including as a teacher, district level supervisor, and principal. Ms. Edgecomb was elected to the Hillsborough County School Board in 2004, where she served with distinction until 2016, and she continues to serve as a member of the Board of Directors of the Hillsborough Education Foundation. In 2020, she was inducted into Hillsborough County's Women Hall of Fame. After her retirement, Mrs. Edgecomb supported and participated in the establishment of the George Edgecomb Society in her late husband's honor, in partnership with the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center. In 2021, the Children's Board of Hillsborough County honored her by naming one of its seven family resource centers in her honor: the Doretha Wynn Edgecomb Family Resource Center. It is the only center that is named after a member in the community. Additionally, the Doretha Edgecomb Female Symposium, named in her honor, is designed to empower, inspire, and encourage young women through a day of activities and interactions with successful women in the community.

About Ellsworth G. Simmons

A respected government civic leader, Mr. Simmons was a School Board member who went on to serve 21 years on the Hillsborough Board of County Commissioners - 18 of those as chair. Through his leadership and guidance, new institutions - University of South Florida - and new communities - Sun City Center - were created in Hillsborough County. He was a central figure in the construction of Tampa International Airport, the founding of University Community Hospital, and the expansion of the Hillsborough County Health Department.

Selection process

Each winter, a Good Government Award Committee examines the significant events, leadership opportunities and outstanding achievements of nominees and selects an individual or group. The committee submits its recommendation to the Board of County Commissioners for approval.

The Good Government Award Committee consists of nine members, two members representing the Simmons family and one member chosen by each commissioner.

Award recipients

  • 2024 - Doretha Wynn Edgecomb
  • 2023 - Clara Reynolds
  • 2022 - Julianne M. Holt
  • 2021 - Lesley "Les" Miller, Jr.
  • 2020 - Arthenia Joyner
  • 2019 - Betty Castor
  • 2018 - David Gee 
  • 2017 - Rubin E. Padgett 
  • 2016 - Jan Kaminis Platt
  • 2015 - Former Governor Bob Martinez
  • 2014 - Doug Belden
  • 2013 - Former Mayor Pam Iorio
  • 2012 - Dr. Judy Genshaft
  • 2011 - Dottie Berger MacKinnon
  • 2010 - Pat Frank
  • 2009 - Dr. Earl J. Lennard
  • 2008 - Judge E.J. Salcines
  • 2007 - Cal Henderson
  • 2006 - Louis E. Miller
  • 2005 - H. Lee Moffitt
  • 2004 - H. L. Culbreath
  • 2003 - Former Mayor Dick Greco
  • 2002 - Save Our Bays, Air & Canals
  • 2001 - Former State Sen. Malcom E. Beard
  • 2000 - State Sen. Tom Lee
  • 1999 - James L. Redman
  • 1998 - Nettie Mae Draughon
  • 1997 - Sam M. Gibbons
Last Modified: 5/2/2024, 4:09:06 PM

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