Andrew Gillum

Mayor

Tallahassee, FL

Andrew D. Gillum, a Florida A&M University graduate, former FAMU student government president and board trustee was elected to the Tallahassee City Commission February 2003. He was elected in August 2014 to serve a four-year term as Mayor for the City of Tallahassee. He has served lead roles for the Financial Viability; Long Range Planning; and, Innovation and Engagement Target Issue Committees as well as the Joint Planning Board for Human Services Partnership. Major community initiatives include Nims Middle School Digital Harmony, Landlord Tenant Mediation, Code Enforcement Amnesty, Palmer Munroe Teen Center, commercial utility deposit rebates, and seven-day guarantee permitting.

He’s the National Director of People For the American Way Foundation’s Youth Leadership Programs which includes the Young Elected Officials (YEO) Network. YEO offers elected officials age 35 and under public policy support and leadership development training. Andrew is a Board Director for the Schott Foundation for Public Education and New World Foundation. He, his wife R. Jai, and their twins Jackson and Caroline, reside in Tallahassee, Florida.

Pro-Growth Progressive Ideas Shared

Problem

New entrepreneurs and start-ups are an important component to growing new sectors of the economy, especially in a City like Tallahassee, where the largest employers and purchasing powers are government related (state, local, universities, etc.). Due to a lack of industry and economic dynamism, the barriers to financial capital that face any new business are more pronounced, causing an even more challenging environment for these firms to be successful. Additionally, due to certain state and local procurement policies, new businesses who often operate with lean staff capacity and knowledge find it very challenging to compete and win contracts from large public institutions.

Solution

Mayor Andrew Gillum launched the Tallahassee Innovation Partnership (TIP), providing a front-door to City Hall and other local community institutions for start-ups to beta-test and sell their products and services. The TIP also encourages the use of open public data to commercialize new technologies and improve public services. By connecting new entrepreneurs to these resources as they begin to launch their companies, Mayor Gillum is helping expand economic opportunity in his city.