Sources: Government Hire Sabotaged By Politics





The glue that holds politics together is reward and punishment.

That insight was provided to me years ago by attorney Sam Fields, who is also a political activist and contributor.

Former Coconut Creek Mayor Lisa Aronson fell prey earlier this month to that old adage. Aronson was passed over for the influential job of Broward Charter Commission executive director.

Four sources say the stench of political wheeling and dealing is all over the move.


Lisa Aronson

Lisa Aronson: Sabotaged By Politics? 


Aronson’s sin. She had the pluck to run against Mark Bogen for County Commission last year.

She lost.

That apparently doomed her chances because Bogen and his supporters have long memories. That is according to the sources who have intimate knowledge of the goings on at the Broward Government Center.

Aronson is puzzled, at least publicly.  She says she has “no idea” why she was passed over for the job.

Bogen insisted the speculation was wrong.

“Its absolutely untrue.  It is so wrong.  I actually called Lisa to ask her about something.  I want to get along with her.  I want to meet her (after the Holidays).  I have no idea why the people on the committee did what they did,” Bogen said.

Here is what happened:

The charter commission is appointed periodically to review Broward’s government and suggest changes. The voters must approve any recommendations in a future referendum.

Each of the nine commissioners appoints two members to the charter group. The entire commission also appoints a 19the member.

Members of the charter commission then pick an executive director.

The Sun-Sentinel’s Brittany Wallman wrote last summer that “a betting person might consider that one applicant served as executive director for the Charter Review Commission twice before. Lisa Aronson, former Coconut Creek commissioner and mayor, and unsuccessful candidate last year for Broward County Commission, has been attending the charter commission meetings and made her desire known early on.”

The commission appointed a subcommittee to shortlist the applicants for executive director. This subcommittee came back with one name: Aronson.

The choice of Aronson upset Charter Commission Chair Tom McDonald, minutes of the meetings indicate.

McDonald is the ultimate Broward Government Center insider — a three-decades long engineering company owner who does business with the county. He is also a generous campaign contributor and occasional lobbyist.

Sources say that McDonald depends on the votes of County Commissioners like Bogen.

So when McDonald said the subcommittee should reconsider its choice, the sources were not surprised. He wanted more recommendations for the full commission to consider.

McDonald – he did not return a call for comment — expanded the subcommittee to include more members, including a supporter of Bogen.

The group met again and came back in late December with six names. None of the six were Aronson, who suddenly disappeared from consideration although she clearly has the most experience.

The full 19-member commission must now pick an executive director from the six names…or add other choices like Aronson.

Politics at its worse? You bet!

What a great way to start out the process of examining the best path for Broward’s future.



14 Responses to “Sources: Government Hire Sabotaged By Politics”

  1. Sad Irony says:

    Lisa pays for the sins of Dale Holness who screwed up the race and cost Bogen an extra 100-200k to win the race.

  2. Elizabeth Matramos says:

    Broward politics at its finest. Dale Holeness is a disgrace. So…how do you dismantle the corrupt Broward County political machine? Term limits, recusals, OMG how about ethics?

  3. Just Saying says:

    Lisa Aronson was always an unimpressive and unimaginative choice. She was also a tool of the developers and lobbyists as a city commissioner. She had also pushed as a city commissioner to get the county to weaken the ethics code’s gift ban. What simply happened was that nearly all of them said “can’t we do better?” And the answer was yes. The fix had been in on the pick … but the fix was intended for Lisa on round one. This time it was the good government people who won by rejecting her. Bogen had zero to do with it.

  4. Mr. Smith goes to Broward says:

    So, let me get this straight, Buddy. When this committee was appointed, you complained that every member was an “Ultimate Insider,” whatever that means.

    Then, this committee of Ultimate Insiders decides to select an executive director, who will be very well compensated for very little work, and you complain that they’re not giving this political plum job to the one Ultimate Insider who had it the last two times?

    Really Buddy, if you want to shed tears that poor little Lisa Aronson isn’t going to make another $200,000 of taxpayer money this decade, then that’s on you. If you’re interested in another title for this piece when you update it, might I suggest “Lisa Aronson does not have enough pull with insiders to secure her old six-figure political appointment for a thire time.”

  5. City Activist Robert Walsh says:

    First of all Lisa Aronson should have known this was going to be a given. Lets face it if she won that district election and Bogen wanted this position she would have done the same thing(yes). #1 your comment concerning Comm.Holeness carries a lot of weight. Word has it(love my sources-remember some of you my sources are my supporters and my supporters are my sources) that it was Holeness that put that young black guy(under Judy Stern’ direction) to close out the primary so republicans would be shut out- speaking of that what was the State Supreme court ruling(Bill scherer)in that matter- this maneuver was done so that Charlotte Rodstrom would lose-(huh Judy). So now we have comm.Bogen playing “getting even”-be careful Mark many of us have a biter taste in our mouths w/ that election turn out. Dale Holeness all these “favors” you are doing (going along w/ Barbara Sharif w/ the Vice Mayor nomination(ok)I just hope these above mention help you out when you need them(huh Judy). So Comm.Bogen is calling the shots on this one. Time will tell…..

  6. Who Got the $$$$$$$ says:

    Just another unnecessary welfare Queen on the government dole.

  7. ComesToRoost says:

    “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.” – Abraham Lincoln

    Lisa Aronson’s lack of people skills impinges on her ability to lead, compromise or organize a group of capable people such as this. Her thinking and speaking are fragmented, circular and long winded. She never mastered the beautiful art of a period at the end of a sentence.
    Lisa lacks humor, charm and wit. My grandfather said,
    “You’re either born with it, or you die without it”.

  8. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    1. Business people want a strong executive n low taxes n high benefits for themselves i.e. strong
    Mayor like Miami-Dade or even stronger while
    2. Little fish lobbists n ethnic or neighborhood would be power brokers n smaller non profits want strong District Commissioners.
    3. Florida has few if any long time (that means pre-world war I) wealthy families with no economic axes to grind in local politics who enter politics and even later old family connected ones like Leroy Collins are few n far between to sit on boards or commissions.
    4. The Charter Review Commissions cacan easily be made honest by appointing academic types devoid of political connections.
    5. Appointments of elected officials former elected officials arent per se corrupt but any appointment of a lobbyist stinks n a PAID staff for a Charter Review Commission should be kept to modestly paid college students professors or technical people mostly parttime. From the description this Commission like every board or commission the County and even most Broward Cities appoint is a joke and a taxpayer rip off.

  9. Inquiry says:


    Do you know what the job formally pays?

  10. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:


    Look, I’ve known Lisa Aronson for nearly 20 years and was on the charter board in 2000. She was our executive director. She did a great job and got along with everybody.

    So, she’s already proven several times that she can do that job well. OK, so she ran for county commissioner and lost. So what? Long list of those and there’s nothing wrong with trying.

    More to the point, Lisa knows that job like the back of her hand. So if the charter board picks another, fine. They have that prerogative. But then their choice has to fall on someone with a better resume. Otherwise this will look like a political hatchet job. There’s just no getting around that.

    And, by the way, I totally believe Mark Bogen. On any level you choose there’s absolutely no advantage to him if Lisa doesn’t get that job. None. In fact the contrary is more possibly true. Besides, he’s not the type to pull cheap shots like this. I’ve met him and can tell. He’s a smart and classy guy, not the type to get stuck in a mud pit like this scenario.


  11. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    If anyone thinks mark bogan isnt amongst those cutting off his opponent at the knees they are plain DUMB

  12. Fake Burnedette Norris Weeks says:

    Right on Angelo, Mark Bogen is not one to carry petty grudges into his service of County Commissioner.

    I am sure Brenda Snipes would agree with this as well.

  13. ex-electeds are all the same says:

    @ comes to roost
    Comment observation spot on. Never thought of it that way but she is as described. She was on Broward Planning Council and it was clear that not being the lead or final voice (among a board of a dozen or so) was not her cup of tea. Every vote by her was a yes vote for development. She had been an elected for so long that being a layperson citizen was the last thing she could be.

  14. Commissioner Angelo Castillo says:

    Dear Fake,

    My observation addressed cheap shots — or to be be more precise, unquestionably cheap and meritless political shots.

    As to matters that some might consider substantive, I offer no comment. Those considerations had nothing to do with my observation above.