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When local voices come together, great things happen. Our cities and issues may not be the same, but we're all united in making local choices. 


The FLC annual conference is an opportunity for municipal officials and senior staff to enhance leadership skills, learn from municipal experts, share ideas with peers, discuss strategies for Florida’s future and hear about the latest in products and services for municipal governments. View Conference Announcement

This year’s conference will include breakout sessions, committee meetings, keynote presentations, awards and more. Plus, we will discuss and adopt the FLC 2022 Legislative Action Agenda to guide advocacy efforts at the state Capitol. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn, network and share. Register Now

COVID-19 safety protocol for this event will be posted soon. 

Click here to view the resolutions submitted for consideration by the FLC Resolutions Committee.

Florida League of Cities 2021 Annual Conference
August 12-14, 2021
Orlando World Center Marriott
Register Online

The Exhibit Hall for the 2021 Annual Conference is SOLD OUT. Sponsorship opportunities are available. Contact Heidi Hogarth to learn more.


Important Hotel Update
The hotel’s main pool suffered a catastrophic crack to its foundation late last year, necessitating a complete reconstruction from the ground up. Unfortunately, due in part to labor and material shortages resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, repairs to the pool will not be completed until the end of August, so the main pool will not be available during our conference. 

The Marriott does still have other pool facilities available. The waterslide and kids’ splash pad are still open, as well as the hotel’s indoor pool. The hotel is still holding its nightly laser show and the Disney fireworks are resuming in July. In addition, the hotel will be offering a 10% discount on food and beverage (excluding alcohol) at all its restaurants for FLC attendees. Just be sure to show your name badge to receive the discount.

We know this is disappointing news for those of you who are used to bringing your families to enjoy the Marriott, but this situation was entirely out of the hotel’s control.  If you have registered a guest (or guests) for the conference and they no longer wish to attend, please send an email to Melanie Howe at mhowe@flcities.com and we will be happy to refund the guest registration fees.

We apologize for the inconvenience this will cause, but we are still determined to provide you with an excellent conference and a chance to network with your peers.  We’ll see you soon in Orlando!


Conference Agenda*

Wednesday, August 11

9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Research Symposium: Grants for Florida’s Cities: Assistance, Availability and Accountability
Join us for the Florida League of Cities 2021 Grants Symposium as we explore the grants process with guidance from the League’s grants assistance partner eCivis and representatives from state agencies, including the Department of Economic Opportunity, the Department of Environmental Protection and the Division of Emergency Management. Register Online


2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Candid Conversation with Mayors

Additional registration required through the Florida League of Mayors; contact Rachel Embleton at rembleton@flcities.com.

Thursday, August 12


7:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Registration Desk Open


8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Continuing Education in Ethics: Have You Completed Your Hours?

Florida’s municipal elected officers are required to take four specific hours of continuing education in ethics per year. If you haven’t completed your hours yet, this is your opportunity! The four hours include two hours on the Florida Ethics Law (Chapter 112, Florida Statutes), one hour of public meetings (Chapter 286, Florida Statutes) and one hour of public records (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes). If your hours are completed, this class is a good refresher.

Speakers: Scott Paine, Ph.D., Director, Leadership Development and Education, Florida League of Cities; and Martin Shelby, J.D., Council Attorney, City of Tampa

NOTE: You must be registered for the full conference to attend this session, and pre-registration is required. Registration is limited to the first 150 people. See the registration form for details.


9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Florida League of Mayors Nominating Committee Meeting


10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Florida League of Mayors Business Meeting

For more information, contact Rachel Embleton at rembleton@flcities.com.


11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Florida League of Mayors Board of Directors Meeting


12:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Municipal Marketplace Open


1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

“Cities 101” Workshop

If you are newly elected or newly appointed, this “crash course” is designed for you. Details about Florida municipalities, the services they provide and governing challenges will be discussed. This course is a prequel to the popular Institute for Elected Municipal Officials (IEMO) but is not a substitute for the three-day IEMO class.

Speakers: Robert E. Lee, DPA, ICMA-CM, Executive Director, Center for Florida Local Government Excellence; and Lynn Tipton, Director, FLC University, Florida League of Cities


1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Legislative Policy Committee Meetings

            - Finance, Taxation and Personnel

            - Land Use and Economic Development

            - Municipal Administration

            - Transportation and Intergovernmental Relations

            - Utilities, Natural Resources and Public Works


3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.


Council Meetings that Build Trust

Something more than formal business is on the agenda whenever a municipal council meets: the public’s perception of the city’s elected leaders and their trust in city government. This entertaining and informative workshop will present some of the best (and some of the worst) ways to uphold the public trust from the dais.

Moderator: Robert S. “Sam” Fite Jr., Vice Mayor, City of Bowling Green 

Speaker: Scott Paine, Ph.D., Director, Leadership Development and Education, Florida League of Cities

Legislative Session Hot Topics

This workshop will take a close look at three important bills that passed in the 2021 Legislative Session concerning broadband, home-based businesses and state flooding and sea level rise resilience. Three expert panelists will discuss key takeaways and expectations for implementation in the months ahead.

Moderator: Joseph McMullen, Commissioner, City of Oakland

Speakers: Alec Bogdanoff, Ph.D., Florida Director, American Flood Coalition; David Cruz, Legislative Counsel, Florida League of Cities; and Amber Hughes, Senior Legislative Advocate, Florida League of Cities



5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Federal Action Strike Team Meeting


5:15 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

First-Time Attendees’ Orientation

If this is your first FLC Conference, welcome! This workshop will acquaint you with the League, the conference program (with tips for the best use of your time), how to get involved in your local or regional league, FLC legislative policy committees and other municipal services.

Moderator: Joseph McMullen, Commissioner, City of Oakland

Speakers: Shwanda Barnette, J.D., Ambassador, Florida League of Cities; Scott Dudley, Director, Field Advocacy and Federal Affairs; Florida League of Cities; Eryn Russell, Ambassador and Programs Coordinator, Florida League of Cities; and Lynn Tipton, Director, FLC University, Florida League of Cities



6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

President’s Welcome Reception in Municipal Marketplace

NOTE: Name badges must be worn to attend this event.


Friday, August 13


6:15 a.m. - 8:00 a.m.

5K Fun Run

Join us for our fifth biennial Florida League of Cities 5K Fun Run/Walk. The run will take place on the grounds of the Marriott’s golf course and is open to everyone participating in the conference. This will be a “fun run” and not a timed event. There is no charge for the event, but pre-registration is required. (See main registration form.) All participants will receive a T-shirt and gym towel. Light refreshments will be provided after the race. So come on out and start your morning off right with a fun run and great company!


7:00 a.m. - 8:00 a.m.

Florida Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials Breakfast

Additional registration required through the Florida Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials; contact Nykierama Cooper at ncooper@flcities.com.


7:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.

Continental Breakfast in Municipal Marketplace


7:00 a.m. - 1:15 p.m.

Municipal Marketplace Open


7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Registration Desk Open


8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.


Social Media: Reaching Your Residents, Staying in Bounds

The social media landscape continues to evolve. In this workshop, we’ll take familiar and new tools and Florids state rules.

Moderator: Jolien Caraballo, Councilwoman, City of Port St. Lucie and 2nd Vice President, Florida League of Cities

Speakers: Randol D. Mora, Partner, Trask Daigneault, LLP; and Tracy Rohrbach, Politics and Government Outreach Manager, Facebook

Advocacy: Educating, Engaging and Energizing Citizens on Home Rule
Join our panelists as they discuss their efforts to identify, educate, engage and encourage concerned citizens, business groups and others in protecting local decision-making. They will share their success stories and field questions to help you succeed in your citizen outreach efforts.

Moderator: Beth Rawlins, President, Business Watch

Speakers: Carolyn Cooper, Commissioner, City of Winter Park; Fred Forbes, Councilman, City of Bonita Springs; Lois Paritsky, Vice Mayor, Town of Ponce Inlet; and Beverly Williams, Vice Mayor, City of Lauderdale Lakes



9:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Resolutions and Legislative Committee Meetings


9:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.


Understanding and Fostering Racial Equity: A Conversation

Conversations about racial equity are important and increasingly common. They also are full of potential for misunderstanding, as our personal experiences profoundly influence how each of us enters into these conversations. This workshop will help both those who are engaged and those who are uncertain of the priority of this conversation to find ways to talk together for the good of our communities.

Moderator: Philip E. Walker, Commissioner, City of Lakeland and 1st Vice President, Florida League of Cities

Speakers: Shwanda Barnett, J.D., Ambassador, Florida League of Cities; Terrill Hill, Mayor, City of Palatka and President, Florida League of Mayors; Scott Paine, Ph.D., Director, Leadership Development and Education, Florida League of Cities; and Philip E. Walker, Commissioner, City of Lakeland and 1st Vice President, Florida League of Cities

Targeted by Hackers: Cybersecurity Risk, Mitigation and Future Trends
Cities across Florida and the rest of the country continue to be brutally assaulted by hackers and ransomware gangs who demand big payouts while holding the threat of exfiltrated data over their heads. This workshop will take a deep dive into what our cities are currently experiencing from a high-level technology and cyber insurance viewpoint, as well as what they are doing to try to mitigate against these risks so that they may continue to serve their citizens without interruption. The speakers will discuss current and future cyber attack trends, and focus on what cities should be planning—from a technology, policy and insurance perspective—to deal with these attacks in the most effective manner.

Moderator: Robert Beach, Chief Technology Officer, City of Cocoa

Speakers: Lainee Beigel, Senior Vice President, EPIC Brokers; Kristin Falzone, Vice President, EPIC Brokers; and Dr. Ronald Sanders, Staff Director, Florida Center for Cybersecurity (CyberFlorida)



10:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

Opening General Session

Presiding: Antonio L. “Tony” Ortiz, President, Florida League of Cities and Commissioner, City of Orlando

Call to Order


Opening Ceremony


Presentation of Colors: Altamonte Springs Police Department Honor Guard


National Anthem


Invocation: Jolien Caraballo, Councilwoman, City of Port St. Lucie and 2nd Vice President, Florida League of Cities


Awards and Recognition: Antonio L. “Tony” Ortiz, President, Florida League of Cities and Commissioner, City of Orlando


 Recognition of Years of Service Awards


 Presentation of the E. Harris Drew Municipal Official Lifetime Achievement Award


Address: Kevin Guthrie, Director, Florida Division of Emergency Management

Keynote Address: Leland Melvin


12:15 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.

Sidewalk Café in Municipal Marketplace (Cash Sales)


1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.


Renewable Energy and 21st Century Sustainability

You don’t have to own an electric utility to reduce your municipality’s carbon footprint. This workshop will explore options for municipalities interested in making changes towards a zero-carbon economy and a sustainable future, including how to ready your community for electric vehicles and more.

Moderator: Antonio L. “Tony” Ortiz, President, Florida League of Cities and Commissioner, City of Orlando

Speakers: Chris Castro, Sustainability Coordinator, City of Orlando; and James M. Fenton, Director, FSEC Energy Research Center

Media Amidst a Rapidly Changing Landscape

Between 24-hour news cycles, a hyper-partisan climate and information coming at you from every direction, how do you get your city’s story heard through all the clutter? How has media changed and how can you use it to your advantage? Join veteran political reporter Matt Dixon from POLITICO, Todd DeAngelis, public information officer for the City of Parkland and political and communications consultant Steve Vancore as they discuss these issues and more. 

Moderator: TBD

Speakers: Todd DeAngelis, Public Information Officer, City of Parkland; Matt Dixon, Senior Reporter, POLITICO Florida; and Steven J. Vancore, President, VancoreJones Communications



2:45 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.


Breaking Down the American Rescue Plan Act: What Cities Need to Know

The American Rescue Plan Act created the Local Fiscal Recovery Fund by which every Florida city is eligible to receive significant funding to assist with recovery efforts associated with COVID-19. Come hear from our panel of federal and state experts to learn more about this program and how your city can maximize this opportunity.

Moderator: TBD

Speakers: Irma Esparza Diggs, Senior Executive and Director, Federal Advocacy, National League of Cities; and Melissa Shirah, Bureau Chief, Bureau of Recovery, Florida Division of Emergency Management

You Lost Me at “Home Rule”

Why do so many legislators bristle at the words “Home Rule?” Why does it always seem like legislators are local government’s adversaries instead of our allies? The legislative-local government relationship is complex and often rocky, made all the worse because we continue to talk past each other. In this workshop, three lobbying veterans will give their perspectives about state and local relations, how things got to this point, and how to advocate strategically without being adversarial.
Moderator: Dominick Montanaro, Vice Mayor, City of Satellite Beach and Chair, Advocacy Committee

Speakers: Rebecca O’Hara, Deputy General Counsel, Florida League of Cities; Kirk Pepper, Senior Government Affairs Consultant, GrayRobinson, P.A.; and Joseph R. Salzverg, Associate/Government Consultant, GrayRobinson, P.A.



4:15 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.


Navigating the Council-Manager Relationship

In Florida, many municipalities have the council-manager form of government and operate with a professional manner. Regardless of your city’s form of government, the difference your professional staff can make is important—at all levels. This workshop will focus on navigating the working relationship between your city council and professional staff, focusing on best practices for working together to accomplish your city’s goals.

Moderator: Horace A. McHugh, President, Florida City and County Management Association

Speaker: Jennifer Fadden, Chief Operating Officer, Strategic Government Resources

Here Come the Jetsons: The Future of Transportation Technology
How many years ago were we saying: “In the not-too-distant future we’ll have cars driving themselves on city streets?” Now there are companies developing flying cars. Technology is changing faster than ever before. Allow yourself to peek into a crystal ball of what a municipality could look like with free-flowing streets without ANY drivers. Dream a little about the not-too-distant future with a flying taxi taking you across town for a meeting. Join us to hear from a panel of public and private speakers, all experts in each of these spaces as they give you the basics and allow you to focus on the future of transportation technologies in your city.

Moderator: Joshua Simmons, Vice Mayor, City of Coral Springs

Speakers: Racquel Asa, Chief Marketing Office, Beep; and Matthew Broffman, Senior Manager, Public Policy, Lilium



6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

2021 Home Rule Heroes Reception

(All delegates welcome.)


Evening Open


Saturday, August 14


7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.

Various Local/Regional League Breakfast Meetings

Contact your local league for more information.


7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Registration Desk Open


9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Annual Business Meeting
To properly conduct the business of the League, it is necessary to separate the delegates into voting and non-voting sections for the Business Session. If necessary, sufficient time will be allocated for caucus by individual city delegates.

Presiding: Antonio L. “Tony” Ortiz, President, Florida League of Cities and Commissioner, City of Orlando

Parliamentarian: Kraig Conn, General Counsel, Florida League of Cities

Call to Order

Approval of 2020 Minutes

Reports of Policy Committees and Ad Hoc Committees 

Finance, Taxation and Personnel
Chair: Kenny Johnson, Deputy Mayor, City of Palm Bay

Land Use and Economic Development
Chair: Jack Dearmin, Vice Mayor, City of Lake Alfred

Municipal Administration
Chair: Kimberly Glas-Castro, Vice Mayor, Town of Lake Park

Transportation and Intergovernmental Relations
Chair: Rufus J. Borom, Commissioner, City of Palatka

Utilities, Natural Resources and Public Works
Chair: Heidi Herzberg, Mayor, City of Deltona

Federal Action Strike Team 
Chair: Greg Ross, Mayor, City of Cooper City

Advocacy Committee
Chair: Dominick Montanaro, Vice Mayor, City of Satellite Beach

Unfinished Business

New Business

Report of Resolutions and Legislative Committees
Chair: Phillip E. Walker, First Vice President, Florida League of Cities; Commissioner, Lakeland

Report of Nominating Committee
Chair: Isaac Salver, Council Member, Town of Bay Harbor Islands

Election of Officers

Comments for the “Good of the Order”

Adjournment of Business Session



10:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

Second General Session

Call to Order


Pledge of Allegiance


Awards and Recognition: Antonio L. “Tony” Ortiz, President, Florida League of Cities and Commissioner, City of Orlando


 Recognition of Municipal Achievement Award Winners


 Presentation of Defender of Home Rule Award


President’s End of the Year Video


Keynote Address: Kenneth W. Gronbach


12:30 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Past Presidents’ Luncheon and Installation of New President

Call to Order


Invocation: Holly D. Smith, Mayor, City of Sanibel


Introduction and Installation of Incoming President: Bishop Walker K. Laidler Jr., Christ Community Christian Center Church, Lakeland


2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.


Crisis Communication: When the Shift Hits the Fan

It’s a crisis! Noted communications professional, Steven Vancore of VancoreJones Communications, will conduct an interactive and informative presentation on crisis communications, apologies and how to effectively stay on your best message.

Moderator: TBD

Speaker: Steven J. Vancore, President, VancoreJones Communications 

Beyond Advocacy: This is Your League, These are Your Services
Municipalities have recognized the League as a powerful united voice in the fight for Home Rule for almost 100 years. Come discover all the League’s service offerings beyond advocacy. From insurance and financial services to education and training, the League has got you covered! Check out this session on how League services—built by and for cities—are tailored to meet the needs of your municipality.

Speakers: Shwanda Barnette, J.D., Ambassador; Chris Krepcho, Director, Insurance Services; Eryn Russell, Ambassador; and Paul Shamoun, Director, Financial Services



6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.

Inaugural Celebration – Recover, Relax, Rejoice

Join your friends and colleagues as we celebrate being back together after a long year apart. Enjoy strolling entertainment, delicious food and drink and an opportunity to dance the night away.


*Schedule and speakers subject to change.

Future Conference Dates + Locations

  • August 11-13, 2022 at the Diplomat Beach Resort – Hollywood


  • August 10-12, 2023 at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek


  • August 15-17, 2024 at the Diplomat Beach Resort - Hollywood

2020 Conference Information

With the health and safety of our membership and staff our top priority, the August 2020 FLC Annual Business Meeting/Nominating Committee Meetings and FLC Board Meetings were held on a fully virtual basis. Conference minutes are available here. Click here to view the resolutions approved during the business meeting on Friday, August 14. 

Given the recent strain on municipal budgets, as well as the uncertainty surrounding gathering sizes and the potential future health impacts of COVID-19, the League felt a virtual event would both help protect our membership and allow more municipal officials to participate. 

The League remains committed to providing opportunities for all virtual attendees to engage, interact and collaborate on the future of the organization.

2019 Conference Information

The 93rd Annual Conference of the Florida League of Cities was held August 15-17, 2019, at the Orlando World Center Marriott.

Click here to view the resolutions approved during the business session on Saturday, August 17. Conference minutes are available here. Presentations from the 2019 Conference are available here

(Please Note: Not all sessions/workshops had presentation materials and some presenters may choose not to share their presentations online.)