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Town employees recognized at annual lunch event

Carolyn Brown and Howard Tipton address the employees.
Carolyn Brown and Howard Tipton address the employees.
Photo by Carter Weinhofer
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On June 21, the town of Longboat Key’s employees gathered at the St. Mary, Star of the Sea reception hall for the annual employee recognition luncheon. 

Employees from all of the town’s departments enjoyed a taco bar while conversing with staff from other departments for the event which Town Manager Howard Tipton said is important to recognize the hard work of the employees. 

“This town is a premier community, but that doesn’t happen without each of you,” Tipton said in his address to the employees. 

After lunch, the staff members participated in relay games to win more prizes for the raffle. All of the raffle prizes — including over $2,000 in gift cards — were donated by department heads and town commissioners as a way to say thank you. 

This year’s theme was sports, so employees were encouraged to wear attire representing their favorite sports team. 

Support Services Director Carolyn Brown organized the event and said many of the new ideas for this year, like the taco bar and relay games, came from the recent ENGAGE Program, which was the town’s first employee professional development program. 

With peak season officially behind them, Tipton said the event was a way to take a deliberate pause in the workflow to recognize the staff’s hard work and accomplishments over the past year. 

“A lot of the time we don’t pause and say thank you,” Tipton said. “It’s important, and I think it's always the small things that mean the most.” 



Carter Weinhofer

Carter Weinhofer is the Longboat Key news reporter for the Observer. Originally from a small town in Pennsylvania, he moved to St. Petersburg to attend Eckerd College until graduating in 2023. During his entire undergraduate career, he worked at the student newspaper, The Current, holding positions from science reporter to editor-in-chief.

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