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City Of St. Petersburg Announces New Leadership

The City of St. Petersburg has announced the selection of the new City Development Administrator and welcome a new member to the City leadership team.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – The City of St. Petersburg has announced the selection of the new City Development Administrator and welcome a new member to the City leadership team.

Community and Neighborhood Affairs Administrator James Corbett will serve as the new City Development Administrator. Homeless Leadership Alliance of Pinellas CEO and former City Council member Amy Foster will assume the role of Community and Neighborhood Affairs Administrator.

Both positions are effective August 15. Interim City Development Administrator Joe Zeoli will assume his former role as Managing Director of City Development.

The City received several external applications for City Development Administrator. After careful consideration, we determined Mr. Corbett’s extensive experience in city government and directly with the City of St. Petersburg made him the most qualified candidate for the role.

Mr. Corbett began working with the City of St. Petersburg in 2005 within the Codes Compliance department. Over his 16-year tenure, he has served as an inspection supervisor, operations analyst, operations manager, director of Codes Compliance, and most recently, as Community and Neighborhood Affairs Administrator.

Mr. Corbett is a State Certified Building Contractor. He received his Bachelor’s of Science in Finance from the University of South Florida.

Prior to joining the City team, he worked in the financial industry for a large asset management firm. He’s lived in St. Petersburg for 36 years.

During his time in Codes Compliance and as Community and Neighborhood Affairs Administrator, Mr. Corbett collaborated with others to lead significant reductions in blighted properties and used innovative practices to turn vacant lots and blighted properties into affordable homeownership opportunities through the Affordable Housing Lot Disposition Program. He also streamlined the utilization of technology to collect and analyze data to expand operational efficiencies and improve business processes.

“I’m passionate about being able to help facilitate the growth of our great City while making sure we hold onto all the wonderful characteristics that make St. Pete unique,” Corbett said. “I’m grateful for this new opportunity to help St. Pete continue to shine.”

Ms. Foster will assume the role of Community and Neighborhood Affairs Administrator. She is a passionate community advocate dedicated to empowering girls and women, advocating for equity and applying holistic systems change.

Foster currently serves as CEO of the Homeless Leadership Alliance of Pinellas, a role she’s held since late 2020. Prior to that she served on the Continuum of Care Board for six years, including as its chair from 2017 to 2019.

Foster also previously served as the Executive Director of the Guardian Ad Litem Foundation of Tampa Bay where she increased resources and support for children in foster care by more than 500% and advocated for important legislative changes to protect children’s safety and rights.

Foster also served as the National Collaborative Network Manager for a National Science Foundation project providing professional development to 43 states to build public/private cross sector partnerships.

She served as a member of City Council from 2014-2021. 

Foster is originally from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She currently lives in North Kenwood with her partner, Damia Kelly. Foster has one daughter, Elena, whom she adopted after Elena aged out of the foster care system in 2015.

“I am excited for the opportunity to bring my decades of experience in leadership and advocacy roles to the City of St. Petersburg where I will be part of an excellent team of professionals working to ensure equitable access to quality of life within our city,” Foster said. “I want to thank Mayor Ken Welch and City Administrator Rob Gerdes for entrusting me with this important work and I’m looking forward to this next chapter.”

Added St. Petersburg Mayor Kenneth T. Welch: “James Corbett has demonstrated superb dedication, professionalism, talent, and growth in his 16 years with the city and will be an asset to our organization in this new role. Amy Foster’s experience in the advocacy sector and as a City Council member makes her an ideal person to lead or Community and Neighborhood Affairs department and I’m thrilled to welcome her to the team. I’d also like to thank Joe Zeoli for his excellent work as Interim City Development Administrator.”

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