Longtime Oldsmar City Manager Bruce Haddock was honored for his 30 years of service during the City Council meeting last week.
Oldsmar City Manager Bruce Haddock was honored for his 30 years of service to the city last week.
Oldsmar City Manager Bruce Haddock has been called the godfather of city managers in the state of Florida, due to his 30 consecutive years of service to Oldsmsar, during which time the city has experienced unprecedented growth.
Last week, Haddock was recognized for his service, receiving an employee service award from City Council as well as a commendation letter from a national agency.
While presenting an award to city officials on behalf of the International City/ County Management Association, retired Florida City and Council Management Association member Frank Edmunds praised Haddock for his work in Oldsmar over the past three decades.
Frank Edmunds is flanked by Oldsmar City Manager Bruce Haddock (L) and Mayor Doug Bevis (R).
“I’m here this evening on behalf of both of those organizations to present a certificate recognizing and congratulating the City of Oldsmar for 35 years operating as a city council-city manager form of government, as well as a letter to City Manager Bruce Haddock for his success during his tenure here,” Edmunds, the former city manager for the City of Seminole and current interim public works director for Oldsmar, said during the May 17 council meeting.
“Working with a professional manager will reap many rewards for that community, and you are truly an example of that.”
Shortly after Edmunds’ presentation, Mayor Doug Bevis presented Haddock with the city’s Council Manager Award while commending him for his lengthy and successful career.
“The City of Oldsmar adopted the council manager form of government in 1981, and it had four city managers in the first five years of existence,” Bevis read from a prepared speech. “After hiring number five, Bruce Haddock, on May 12, 1986, we have been sitting on number five for 30 years.”
“When the average contract life of city managers sits at about seven years, it’s now appropriate to note that our fearless leader, Bruce Haddock, has eclipsed that mark and stands among the elite of all city managers in the state of Florida.”
Bruce Haddock and his wife, Retha, with Oldsmar Mayor Doug Bevis on May 17, 2016.
Bevis went on to detail many of Haddock’s qualities and accomplishments, including his overseeing of the construction of the city’s reverse osmosis plant and the building of the new library, his working to acquire vast amounts of land and property in the city, some of which has been turned into parks and residential and commercial developments, and his propensity for knowing the answer to any question on most any subject.
“He never overreacts, although he says very little. But nobody ever leaves the room knowing who’s in charge,” Bevis said.
“His understated command of every situation is one of his greatest traits, and he can be intimidating with what he doesn’t say.”
Fittingly, as the speech continued, the mayor couldn’t resist taking a playful swipe at Haddock’s own notoriously lengthy award presentations.
“Bruce’s service award presentations are so awkward they’re actually good,” Bevis joked, adding, “We were going to ask Bruce to present his own award tonight, but we were afraid we’d be here until Thursday!”
Jokes aside, Bevis ended with a poignant commentary on his longtime chief of staff.
“Of all the great things you’ll hear about him, probably the greatest thing is this: he is a great man, loved by all and feared by some, but rarely,” he said. “We may never know what he is thinking, and he likes it that way.”
“But know this—the stability enjoyed by this organization and its citizens has come from the steady hand of the best public administrator that anyone in Pinellas County has ever known.”
Oldsmar City Manager Bruce Haddock.
After receiving the awards, accolades and attention, Haddock took the microphone and offered a few thoughts on all the recognition.
“All of a sudden I’m feeling very tired!” he started. “Certainly I appreciate the gift and the recognition and all the kind words, mayor, and thank you council.”
“I still look forward to coming to work each day, and I haven’t run out of things to do yet,” he continued.
“Of course we have a great group of employees here, and we have a city council that gets along with each other and respects each other and works towards common goals of moving the city forward, so these things make my job much easier. So I just want to say, thank you.”