In one of his final acts as outgoing City Council President, Michael Corrigan (District 14) presented the annual Robert O. Johnson Good Government Award to Jack Gillrup, the City's retiring Chief of the Disabled Services Division. The award was made during the City Council installation ceremony on Thursday, June 28, 2007, at the Jacoby Symphony Hall of the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts.
Jack Gillrup was hired by the City in 1991 shortly after the passage of the federal Americans With Disabilities Act, and has served for 16 years under 3 mayoral administrations as the City's first and only Chief of the Disabled Services Division until his retirement at the end of this week. Mr. Gillrup is wel;-known for his advocacy for the needs of persons with disabilities in the Jacksonville area, and has been integrally involved in all major city construction projects, from River City Renaissance through the Better Jacksonville Plan, to ensure that the needs of persons with disabilities are in the forefront of the design process and that every part of every facility is accessible to persons with vision and mobility challenges. Two of Mr. Gillrup's proudest accomplishments during his tenure with the City are 1) the creation of the Jim Brady Scholarship program for students with disabilities, and 2) his authorship of Ordinance 2002-869-E which requires all landlords to make their rental business properties more accessible to persons with disabilities.
Robert O. Johnson, for whom the award is named, went to work for the City as the Assistant Council Auditor in the summer of 1968, even before the consolidated government took effect on October 1st of that year, was appointed as Council Auditor in 1977, and served in that position until he retired in 2003. Bob Johnson was the absolute epitome of what a public servant should be - hard working, concerned about the well-being of the citizens of our city, scrupulous about how their tax dollars were being spent, and as honest as the day is long. When he retired, the City Council chose to honor his contributions to City government by making an annual award to an employee of the City, the independent authorities, or the Constitutional officers who best exemplifies all the good that Bob Johnson stood for.
Contact: Cheryl Brown, Director/Council Secretary, (904) 630-1452.