Leadership with Courage

A galvanizing wind, Sheila Griffin was born in Live Oak, FL and became a lifetime resident of District 13 in Pinellas County from the age of two years old.  She hails from a hard-working entrepreneurial family with five siblings.  As a mother, former foster parent, and mentor for struggling high school students, she is acquainted with life’s hardships and the power of redemption!  She often exhorts others to change their lives and become victors, not victims.  She resolutely says,

“I Am An AmeriCAN, and I am glad about It!”

Sheila has been a registered Republican since the age of 18 and she is proud to be a leader amid a wave of conservative African-Americans who stand by the heritage and history of civil rights and principles of freedom.

  • In addition to being a member of the St. Petersburg Republican Club, Sheila has been President of the Pinellas Suncoast Black Republican Club since 2014.  Her leadership and commitment to being a part of a responsible team has most recently led to her being elected as the Secretary of the Pinellas County GOP.
  • Florida Bar (Executive Committee for Labor and Employment Law)
  • 2004 Leadership St. Pete, Graduate
  • U.S. Civil Rights Monitor
  • U.S. District Court Rules Committee
  • Ministerial Leader of Aglow, Int’l., Women of Excellence and Pastoral Alliance
  • Executive Board for Aspire Innovative Learning (mentoring and tutoring initiative
  • Instructor Inner City Advocates
  • Coordinator of giving for Grey Foxes
  • The City of St. Petersburg Citizen Review Committee
  • The Executive Board of the St. Petersburg NAACP

Passion

With every professional endeavor, Sheila’s life is committed to service. Her passions have led to service with differently-abled children, international adoptions, mentoring high school youth, and serving with community, civic and civil rights organizations.

  • Early collegiate service included being a volunteer to foster parents in St. Petersburg, Florida.
  • After the birth of her first two natural children, Sheila and her husband began changing lives by parenting young teen males in their first home. Their home was located in one of the few multi-ethnic neighborhoods and school districts which openly embraced their diverse extended family. Her husband was a Union journeyman electrician and suffered a catastrophic injury, changing his status for the remainder of his life to a wheelchair-bound paraplegic. Although they formally left the foster care program, they continued to nurture and create safe-spaces for runaways and young displaced pregnant (abused) teens, until her husband’s injury-related death in 2000.
  • Sheila also created and sponsored a young teen group of 15-35 people who performed dance, drama, and pantomime throughout the US and abroad in schools and faith-based venues.

Experience

Sheila Griffin’s perspective of life is shaped not only by her professional and educational accolades, but by the values of her family, work ethic, and love of the foundational principles under-girding the Constitution of the United States of America. Griffin is a new breed seeking to serve a constituency that deserves courage and the spirit to overcome and yet maintain a consistent commitment to conservative values.

  • Bachelors in Psychology (BS)
  • Master’s in Public Administration (MPA)
  • Master’s in Theology (MTS)
  • Juris Doctorate in Law (JD)
  • Advanced Masters in Law – International Law (LLM)

While serving the Pinellas County Community Development doing municipal infrastructure and housing rehabilitation as a Housing Financial Specialist, Sheila has embraced jobs that required a temperament for coordination with multiple jurisdictions and multiple personalities.

As the Intergovernmental Review Coordinator, she reviewed transportation, wastewater, environment and safety needs for Developments of Regional Impact to assure capacity compliance with Local Government Comprehensive Plans.  This was for municipalities in a four-county region.

The study of law prepared her to serve as a Federal Law Clerk to the Honorable Henry Lee Adams in the U.S. District Courts (Middle District of Florida – Tampa Division), and Chief Justice Elizabeth Kovachevich.

Sheila also served with the Southwest Florida Water Management District, which covered most of the Tampa Bay Metropolitan Area, as an Assistant General CounselDuring her tenure, her efforts decreased Human Resource litigation and claims by over 70%.

Her love for labor and employment law led her to represent individual and corporate clients in state and federal practice throughout Florida. In service to a pursuit of excellence in practice, she brought ingenuity to her service on the Florida Bar Labor and Employment Law Executive Committee.

At the encouragement of a lifelong friend, a Supervising Probation Officer, Sheila accepted the challenge of joining the Florida Department of Community Corrections new employment initiative, as an Employment Specialist. This was a great place to help others with restoration and an understanding of the obligations of redemptive principles.  Remembering the alarming statistics showing that approximately one-third of all foster children become homeless, one-third end up in the criminal justice system, and many of the remaining one-third never achieve a high school diploma, she embraced the opportunity to again change lives. Utilizing academic and professional training she began the work to develop policies, procedures, and curriculum to train felons for job placement in Florida’s third-largest criminal justice circuit.  Hired to get eight hired per month, her efforts led to some of the highest monthly employment hire rates in the State of Florida, rocketing to 42-75 job placements.

Upon completion of theology school, Sheila retired from the practice of law in 2012.

A true patriot, this tenacious fighter’s perspective of life is shaped by the values of her family, work ethic, and love of the foundational principles undergirding the Constitution of the United States of America.