Commissioner Gil Ziffer - Seat 5
Gil Ziffer, a Tallahassee resident since 1983, joined the Tallahassee City Commission on August 31, 2009. He was selected to serve the balance of the term, 14 months, held by former City Commissioner Allan Katz, following his resignation to become the United States Ambassador to Portugal. On August 24, 2010, he was elected to a four-year term on the commission.
Commissioner Ziffer brings a unique perspective and voice to the commission. As president of Ziffer Stansberry Advertising Public Relations, the firm he founded in 1990, he is well versed in the concerns of the business community and economic development efforts. In addition, he has a solid history of assuming an active leadership role with a diverse range of issues and projects throughout the community.
During Commissioner's tenure on the City Commission he has focused his attention on developing and implementing solutions for the Tallahassee area homeless. He has been an integral part in raising awareness and funding for the Arts and Cultural Community in addition to developing public-private partnerships in the support of area youth programs. As a result of these efforts and others Commissioner Ziffer was recognized as Municipal Official of the year for 2014 by the Northwest Florida League of Cities.
Ziffer was appointed by former Mayor Scott Maddox to the 2002-2003 strategic planning committee charged with the research and development of the Cultural Resource Plan for the Future of the City of Tallahassee and the Capital Area. He served as chair of the Youth & Education Task Force which provided recommendations to the City Commission to help maintain the viability and success of arts in our community.
In 2004, Ziffer was appointed by then Secretary of State Glenda Hood to serve as chair of the statewide Friends of the Museums of Florida History board of directors. In 2005, Ziffer facilitated and procured the Museum's largest corporate sponsorship to date, $50,000, to underwrite installation of the historic, and internationally acclaimed, Napoleon exhibit. In addition, he has served on the boards of Big Bend Hospice, Leon County Schools Foundation, Temple Israel, Challenger Learning Center and Young Actors Theatre.
Commissioner Ziffer has maintained an active leadership role with the historic Cascade Park project since 2006. Cascade Park, a signature project of the Blueprint 2000 Intergovernmental Agency, is an outstanding example of successful public/private partnerships, with approximately $26.3 million already dedicated to complete infrastructure and storm water issues. Ziffer served as development chair of the capital campaign to provide private funding of the 22-acre park's planned amenities.
Prior to his Commission appointment, Ziffer was elected to the Capital Region Community Development District (SouthWood) Seat 4 Board of Supervisors in the November 2008 General Election.
Commission Ziffer currently serves on the following Boards - Capital Tiger Bay Club, Tourist Development Council, Florida League of Cities, the Council of Culture and Arts, American Lung Association and the Leon County Research and Development Authority.
In 2006, Commissioner Ziffer was honored by the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce with the community-wide, prestigious Servant Leader of the Year - Distinguished Leadership Award. The Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce recognized his company in 1993 with a Small Business Excellence Award. In addition, he and his business partner/wife are also recipients of the Tallahassee Democrat 1997 Business Volunteer of the Year award and the 1992 Tallahassee/Leon County Historic Preservation Society - Residential Rehabilitation/Restoration Award.
Born February 12, 1957, Commissioner Ziffer is one of five children and grew up in Winter Park, FL. He graduated in 1975 from Lake Brantley High School in Altamonte Springs. Ziffer continued his education at the University of Florida. He and his wife, Gail Stansberry-Ziffer, married since 1990, have two sons and four grandchildren. Their older son, Blair Graham lives in Durham, NC with his wife, daughter and three children. Their younger son, Lee Ziffer and his wife live in New Orleans with one child.