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Government

City Commission

2020 City of Winter Haven Commissioners

Winter Haven has five City Commissioners, which includes an appointed Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem. Commission meetings are generally held the second and fourth Mondays of each month at 6:00 p.m. in the John Fuller Auditorium in City Hall, but are hosting meetings via the ZOOM virtual platform during this time as allowed by Governor DeSantis’s Executive Orders.  Agenda Review Session Meetings to review the Regular City Commission Meeting agenda are typically held the Wednesday prior to the Regular City Commission Meetings. For more information on ways to attend the meeting or provide comments, please contact the City Clerk’s Office at 863-291-5600.

  • City Commissioners must live within the Winter Haven city limits.
  • Commissioners are elected at-large, via a non-partisan election and serve a 4-year term.
  • The Mayor presides at City Commission Meetings.
  • The Mayor Pro Tem presides in the Mayor’s absence.

Commissioners

Mayor Bradley T. Dantzler

Mayor Bradley T. Dantzler was elected to Seat #4 in a special election in spring 2013 and re-elected in 2013 and 2017. Brad served as Mayor in 2016 and 2018. A Winter Haven native, Brad is a third generation Winter Haven City Commissioner. He graduated Winter Haven High School in 1980, University of Florida in 1985 and earned a Master of Business Administration from Nova Southeastern University in 1991. He has been a Senior Vice President and Financial Advisor at Raymond James & Associates for 12 years. Brad is the Commission liaison to the Library Board, Tourist Development Council (TDC), Cultural Arts Advisory Committee (CAAC), and Multimodal Transportation Advisory Committee (MTAC). He and his wife, Susan, have two grown sons, and two granddaughters.

bdantzler@mywinterhaven.com; (863) 289-9947

Mayor Pro-Tem Nathaniel J. Birdsong, Jr.

Mayor Pro-Tem Nathaniel J. Birdsong, Jr., was elected to Seat #2 in 2002 and re-elected in 2007, 2011 and 2015. He served as Mayor in 2006, 2007, 2014 and 2015. He served as Mayor Pro Tem 2004, 2005, 2011, 2013, 2017 and 2018. A Winter Haven native, Nat holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Florida A&M University and an MBA from Nova Southeastern University. He is Executive Director of the Florence Villa Community Development Corporation. Nat is the Commission liaison to the General Employees’ Pension Board, Lakes Advisory Committee, Main Street Winter Haven Board, the Winter Haven Economic Development Council (WHEDC), Central Florida Regional Planning Council, Polk Regional Water Cooperative, and chairs the Polk County Transportation Planning Organization (TPO). Nat and his wife, Elizabeth “Ann,” have two sons and four grandchildren.

nbirdsong@mywinterhaven.com; (863) 289-9813

Commissioner L. Tracy Mercer

Commissioner Lucretia Tracy Mercer, was elected to Seat #1 in 2019. Prior to being elected to the City Commission, Tracy was a Commissioner for the Lake Region Lakes Management District.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Operations from Warner University and an MBA from Webster University in Business Administration.  Tracy is the Commission Liaison to both Police and Fire Pensions Boards, Winter Haven Library Board, Smart Cities Advisory Committee (SCAC) and the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee (AHAC). She is a member and past President of the Kiwanis Club of Winter Haven. She is a past president of Keep Winter Haven Clean and Beautiful and a former member of the Garden Club.  Tracy has one grown son, one granddaughter and one great-grandson.

tmercer@mywinterhaven.com; (863) 289-2944

Commissioner Brian Yates

Commissioner William Brian Yates was elected to Seat #3 in 2019. A Winter Haven native and 7th generation Floridian, Brian graduated from Winter Haven High School, attended Polk State College and graduated from the Florida School of Banking. Brian is a Senior Vice President and the Director of Small Business Lending at Citizens Bank and Trust. Brian is the commission liaison to the Planning Commission, Main Street Winter Haven (MSWH), Polk Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) (seat 2), Ritz Theatre and Ridge League of Cities (RLC) (as alternate). Brian is a past member of the Florence Villa Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) Advisory Committee. He is a member and past President of the Rotary Club of Winter Haven. Brian and his wife Samantha have one son.

byates@mywinterhaven.com; (863) 662-9131

Commissioner James H. “JP” Powell

Commissioner James H. “JP” Powell was elected to Seat #5 in 2017. Commissioner Powell previously served on the Winter Haven City Commission from 2007 to 2016, serving as Mayor 2011, 2012 and 2013. He also served as Mayor Pro Tem in 2009 and 2010. JP is the Commission liaison to the Police Officers’ Pension Board, Firefighters’ Pension Board, Polk Transit Authority and Transportation Disadvantage Local Coordinating Board. An Ohio native, JP attended Malone College in Canton, Ohio, and the University of Akron, Ohio. He is employed as Assistant Manager at Ott-Laughlin Funeral Home and Glen Abbey Memorial Gardens. JP is also a past member and chair of the Winter Haven Planning Commission, Code Enforcement Board and the Florence Villa CRA Advisory Committee. He is a member and Past President of the Rotary Club of Winter Haven and the Winter Haven Optimist Club. Members of First Presbyterian Church, JP and his wife, Kim Traviss Powell, have one grown son Traviss, and dog “PJ.”

jppowell@mywinterhaven.com; (863) 308-2464

Locations
City Hall
451 Third Street NWWinter Haven, Florida 33881
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