Whether it's providing aid to police and fire during an emergency or organizing the annual Veterans Day Parade, Bob Worthington has become a full-time volunteer since retiring from Honeywell nearly 15 years ago.
Now, 65-year-old Bob Worthington wants to pull his experience and ambition together to become the next Gulfport Mayor.
Worthington is challenging Vice Mayor Sam Henderson for the council's highest seat in the March 2013 elections.
Worthington was born and raised in Gulfport, served as a Volunteer Firefighter for 26 years and served six years as the Ward 3 representative on Gulfport City Council. He did not seek re-election in 2010 and decided to focus his attention on expanding the CERT program.
Worthington wants to use his knowledge and experience to improve the city and build on it's assets; the people.
“Our biggest asset to the city is it’s residents and we need to work with the residents to make life easier,” Worthington said.
If elected, Worthington wants to build on unity and come up with solutions for citizens.
"I want to work with code enforcement and citizens to help improve business and personal properties homes, to work with landlords, especially those that don’t live in our communities to improve properties and therefore improving property values.”
Worthington says city leaders need to be tough in some respect, while being realistic.
“Fighting the guy with the couch in the front yard may be something that’s necessary but there are bigger and deeper issues than a couch in the front yard that are easily helped.”
On Worthington's "to do" list: replacing and/or repairing the city's aging sanitary sewer system.
"(There are) pipes that are in the ground that in a lot of cases are more than 50 years old. They leak fluids out of them; they allow water, rainwater to infiltrate the system and Gulfport residents have to pay for that rainwater. It’s really cost residents a lot of money . . . so we really need to repair that.”
Worthington wants to work on projects that will have a positive impact on citizens and create unity on council. He says he's qualified to do just that.
“I think it’s having the ability to work with others and make a difference in a lot of environmental issues and to make the quality of life better for the residents of Gulfport, to create a quality among the citizens and be able to help move those efforts further into the county and state levels.”
Worthington also wants to generate more revenue through initiatives to enhance and/or expand the Gulfport Municipal Marina.
"The more we can do there to improve to make it better, easier access, and better amenities, we’ll only bring more value to the marina and funds to the city.”
He's open to hearing what residents have to say and wants to help plan Gulfport's future.
“Generally when people come with a problem, they’ll have a solution in mind and it’s getting them to share that solution with you, that’s important.”
For More Information:
The municipal elections are on Tuesday, March 12, 2013. The mayor serves a three-year term. The voter registration deadline is Monday, February 11, 2013 for the next city elections. For more information on how to register visit the Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections website.
Both candidates have set up Facebook Pages; here are the links: