Gov. Rick Scott made it official Monday, formally announcing former state Rep. Jimmy Patronis will serve as the state's next Chief Financial Officer.
Scott made the announcement at Captain Anderson's restaurant in Panama City, which the Patronis family has owned and operated for half a century.
Patronis served in the Florida House from 2006 until 2014.
Patronis will succeed current CFO Jeff Atwater who is resigning before his second term is up in order to take a job as vice president at Florida Atlantic University.
Patronis now serves as a commissioner on the Florida Public Service Commission and has been a strong backer of Scott since he first popped onto the Florida political scene in 2010.
Patronis backed Scott during his run for governor in 2010 when many in the GOP establishment were supporting another candidate.
"He brings lots of experience, not only in the state and in the public sector, but the private sector", Griffitts said.
"I support Rick Scott", Neal said in an email.
Patronis said that he was honored to be selected for the position and was excited to be involved in Florida's continued growth.
In a rare opportunity, Scott has the chance to appoint someone to the four-member Cabinet who will nearly assuredly vote in lockstep with him moving forward. The other Cabinet posts are attorney general and agriculture commissioner. Scott will also visit Tampa and Pensacola to publicize the high-profile appointment.
A big question is whether Patronis will be able to run for the job in 2018 with no other Republican opposition.
Florida's chief financial officer is elected statewide and is a member of the state Cabinet that oversees several key agencies. Patronis will be officially sworn into the job on Friday.
In March, Patronis was among a number of political loyalists the governor appointed to the state Constitution Revision Commission. Former State Sen. Jeremy Ring, a former executive at Yahoo and a Democrat, has already started running for the job. But the two clashed previous year over who should become the state's insurance commissioner.