Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn positions himself in the long line of Irish-American political figures. During his first term in office he instituted the Mayor’s River O’ Green Fest, coloring the Hillsborough River a fine shade of emerald.
Now in his second term and with an eye on the Florida governorship, Buckhorn and other Tampa Bay officials have just returned from an economic development trip to Ireland. At a press conference, he said diversity is a key to success:
“Dublin, in particular, is a great role model for what Tampa could become. In 2000, everyone looked like me. You walk around Dublin now, and you hear a multiplicity of languages and see different ethnicities and a lot of young people. They have done exactly what we are attempting to do here.”
As a former resident who maintains personal, professional and property relationships with the Florida city, I hope Buckhorn’s efforts to improve ties with Ireland are successful.