Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis announced Thursday his recommendation of Richard Corcoran, former speaker of the House of Representatives, to Florida's State Board of Education to serve as the next Florida education commissioner.
DeSantis also announced that Rep. Jared Moskowitz, D-Coral Springs, will serve as director of Florida's Division of Emergency Management in the DeSantis-Nuñez Administration.
“I am proud to recommend Richard Corcoran for Florida education commissioner and know he will put his experience and passion for the success of Florida’s students to work in this new role,” said DeSantis. “Richard is known as a no-nonsense reformer whose sole focus has been how best to support students, parents and teachers. This issue is very personal to me. Casey and I believe that the future of our children and the future of all Florida’s children depend on our education system. I know Richard will never stop fighting until every child in Florida has access to a world-class education.
“Rep. Moskowitz will be a great leader for the future of the Florida Division of Emergency Management, preparing our state for situations that need rapid response and real-time execution in the face of crisis,” said DeSantis. “Florida has a long history of being a model for the nation in emergency preparedness and response, and with Jared at the helm, I am confident this legacy will continue. Floridians will be well served with Jared Moskowitz leading this vital agency.”
In his prepared statement, the governor-elect includes background statements on Corcoran and Moskowitz:
"Corcoran’s distinguished public service career has been built around a single principle – children in Florida deserve to go to the school that will give them the greatest chance to succeed in life. He made education reform the centerpiece of his tenure as speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, passing landmark legislation in both the 2017 and 2018 legislative sessions.
"In creating the Schools of Hope program, Corcoran challenged the widespread practice of school districts forcing students to attend failing schools year after year. Corcoran also created the Hope Scholarship program to ensure that no child who has been subject to violence or bullying would be trapped in their school. Additionally, Corcoran made rooting out government waste, promoting transparency in government, full government accountability and openness in taxpayer spending cornerstones of his tenure in public service.
"An attorney with Nelson Mullins in Tampa, Corcoran lives in Pasco County with his wife, Anne, also an attorney, and their six school-age children. Prior to his tenure in elected office, Corcoran served in a variety of staff and political roles in Florida, including as chief of staff for then-Speaker of the Florida House Marco Rubio.
Said Marva Johnson, chair of the state Board of Education, “As chair of the State Board of Education, I look forward to reviewing Governor-elect DeSantis’ recommendation of Richard Corcoran as the next Commissioner of Education. He has the knowledge and experience to ensure continued success at the Department of Education and to protect Florida’s legacy as a national leader in education. He is truly passionate about helping all students get a world-class education.”
"Moskowitz, whose local editorial board called him a 'high octane incumbent' and 'an effective Democratic voice in a Republican-dominated Legislature,' is a member of the Florida House of Representatives, representing the 97th District, which includes Coral Springs in Northern Broward County. Moskowitz was first elected to serve in the Florida House of Representatives in 2012. During his tenure, he was the prime sponsor of anti-BDS legislation as well as strengthening the rights of sexual assault victims by ensuring that one-party records are admissible.
He was instrumental in the passage of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act which was signed into law last year. Moskowitz also served his local community on his city commission, where he was elected at age 25 while a second-year law student. He spearheaded a significant boundary change initiative between Palm Beach and Broward Counties that allowed Parkland to control its growth management. He also focused on eco-friendly and energy-effective initiatives, among other local issues. In addition to his public service tenure, Moskowitz has served as General Counsel for AshBritt Environmental, a preeminent disaster management company providing full disaster management services for over two decades, and has been responsible for building coalitions with local, state and federal government. He has managed contracts for such natural disasters as Hurricanes Sandy, Irma and Matthew.
"Moskowitz is a graduate of George Washington University and the Shepard Broad Law Center at Nova Southeastern University, where he received his Juris Doctorate. He and his wife Leah have been married for seven years and are the parents of two sons, Max and Sam.
“As somebody who lost a home back in Hurricane Ivan, I know how devastated Floridians can be and feel immediately following a disaster. I applaud Governor-elect DeSantis for choosing a capable and caring leader in Jared Moskowitz to lead Emergency Management. Jared is tenacious and meticulous. He is an excellent choice to lead the division as we continue to help Floridians recover from Michael and Irma and will ensure Florida remains well prepared to handle emergency situations,” said state Sen. Doug Broxson.
"Additionally, state Rep. Holly Raschein, representing the Florida Keys, added, 'Governor-elect DeSantis has shown strong leadership in his selection of Jared Moskowitz to lead the Division of Emergency Management. Emergency Management is a non-partisan issue. It’s about keeping people safe before, during and after a disaster situation. Jared has the knowledge and expertise to ensure a quality response in these critical situations and Floridians can rest assured he will constantly look for ways that we can do better as long as he serves.'"