|Born||June 6, 1947|
Bayshore, New York
|Spouse||Debbie Ritchie (2000-present)|
DeeDee Ritchie (divorced)
|Children||Donna, Alan, Scott and Chris|
Walter Jaycox "Buzz" Ritchie, Jr. (b. 1947) is a former District 3 Representative of the Florida House who co-founded Gulf Coast Community Bank in 2002.
Education & early career
Ritchie was born on June 6, 1947 in Bayshore, New York, and moved to Florida in 1956. He graduated Naples High School (Fl) in 1965. He attended the University of Florida, playing football and graduating with a B.S.B.A. in 1969 and a J.D. in 1972.
In the 1970s Ritchie served for 10 years as president of Southern American Mortgage Company. Then, in the mid-80s, he led a public stock offering as president of Southern Home Savings Bank, which was soon sold to Great Western Bank.
Ritchie was elected to the Florida House of Representatives District 3 seat in 1988 and was subsequently reelected. During that time he sat on the Juvenile Justice System Review Task Force (1989), the Mortgage Lending Sunset Task Force (1990), the International Banking Advisory Council (1990), the Public Broadcasting Task Force (1990), and the Productivity Enhancement Task Force (1991).
He retired in 1998, and the District 3 seat was filled by his ex-wife DeeDee.
After term limits forced the retirement of State Senator W. D. Childers in 2000, Ritchie considered seeking the District 1 seat, but ultimately decided against it. "There were a lot of pros and cons, but I just don't think I'm ready to get back into that," he said at the time.
Banking & community service
After retiring from politics, Ritchie became director of development for accounting firm O'Sullivan Creel. In 1999 he agreed to chair a task force seeking solutions on stormwater runoff pollution.
In 2002 Ritchie allied with bank executives Charlie Allcott and Dick Cloutier to create a locally-owned bank. The resulting venture, Gulf Coast Community Bank, was incorporated on June 10, 2003.
After Hurricane Ivan devastated the region in 2004, Ritchie led efforts to found Rebuild Northwest Florida, an organization that helped victims of the storm repair and rebuild damaged homes. He became chairman of the Pensacola Area Chamber of Commerce in 2005.
Ritchie is chairman of the United Cerebral Palsy of Northwest Florida Foundation and was chairman of its "StarFest '96." He has served on a number of other community boards, including: City of Pensacola Environmental Advisory Board, Emerald Coast Classic, Pensacola Symphony Orchestra, Pensacola Little Theater, Pensacola Children's Chorus, Chamber of Commerce Transportation Committee, Pensacola Promise, Operation Greenshores, Sacred Heart Health System, University of West Florida Foundation, Five Flags Rotary, YMCA, African-American Heritage Society, Escambia Bay Marine Institute.
Awards & recognition
- Brown L. Whatley Award for outstanding service to mortgage banking industry, 1981
- Pensacola News Journal and Pensacola Chamber of Commerce Business Leader of the Year, 1986
- Florida Network of Youth and Family Services Distinguished Legislator Award, 1990
- Association for Retarded Citizens Legislator of the Year, 1993
- FTP-NEA Education Friend of the Year 1993
- University of West Florida Honorary Alumnus 1994
- God in Government Award 1995
- Florida Sheriffs Association Legislative Award 1995 and 1996
- March of Dimes Citizen of the Year 1996
- United Way Distinguished Community Service Award, 2002
- Pensacola Area Chamber of Commerce PACE Award for Community Leader of the Year, 2003
- Arthritis Foundation "Baste" fundraiser, 2003
- Kiwaris Club of Pensacola Civic Award, 2004
- Pensacola Civitan Club Citizen of the Year, 2005
- ↑ "Entrepreneurs creating local bank." Pensacola News Journal, August 9, 2002.
- ↑ "Ritchie not ready for return to politics." Pensacola News Journal, February 16, 2000.
- ↑ "Buzz Ritchie agrees to guide stormwater task force." Pensacola News Journal, August 12, 1999.
- ↑ SunBiz.org record
- ↑ "Better jobs, quality of life to guide Pensacola Area Chamber." Pensacola News Journal, October 23, 2005.
Ginger Bass (?)
|Florida House of Representatives District 3