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Ellsworth G. Simmons Good Government Award
The Ellsworth G. Simmons Good Government 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 2016 recipient 
The Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners will present the 2016 Ellsworth G. Simmons Good Jan Platt 1 program.jpgGovernment Award to Jan Kaminis Platt, a former Hillsborough County Commissioner and Tampa City Council member. The presentation was held on Wednesday, April 20, in the County Center Boardroom.

A native of St. Petersburg, Ms. Platt attended Hillsborough High School, and after serving as vice president of the student body at Florida State University, graduated cum laude as a Phi Beta Kappa with a bachelor’s degree in political science. She taught at Hillsborough and Plant High Schools. Additionally, she served as field director for the Tampa Girl Scout Council, president of the Suncoast Girl Scout Council and co-founder of the Junior Discussion Group, a unit of the League of Women Voters.

Her public service experience includes one year on the Florida Constitution Revision Commission (1976) and four years on Tampa’s City Council, from 1974-1978, before serving as a Hillsborough County Commissioner for 24 years. While a member of the Board of County Commissioners, Ms. Platt became co-founder of the Ybor City Saturday Market. She also helped create the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council’s Agency on Bay Management, and the Environmental Lands Acquisition and Protection Program (now known as the Jan K. Platt ELAPP program, in recognition of her role). She also was instrumental in Tampa Bay’s selection into the National Estuary Program. Additionally, Ms. Platt proposed the successful merger of the City and County libraries, and The Jan Kaminis Platt Regional Library was named in her honor. 

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

  • 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