Vote for Bobbie Shay November 2, 2021

“Much of my life has been spent as a national spokesperson and breast cancer advocate. My journey began after a breast cancer diagnosis at age 25 while an NFL cheerleader. I have been a public speaker and nationally published. The same passion I have for breast cancer advocacy will be the passion I give the residents of St. Petersburg as I tackle our city’s problems.


“In remembering my family’s history here, now 4 generations later, I am reminded what this city was and all the potential it has for becoming that again

“It used to feel safe here. Now, as a parent myself, the rise in crime and human trafficking is terrifying. One peak at the Juvenile Welfare Board statistics shows we are desperately failing to provide for the children in this community. And with high rises popping up on every corner all I see is more waste being dumped into our precious waterways as if it is someone else’s problem.

“The work will be hard, but the future of St. Petersburg is on us!”

Bobbie Shay

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September 24, 2021

St. Petersburg natives go head-to-head for District 1 council seat


Bobbie Shay Lee’s top priority for the City of St. Petersburg is public safety.

The 48-year-old breast cancer advocate, consultant and former nonprofit executive wants to see the city implement programs to combat violence and reduce the number of homicides.

“Lawlessness is excused, and I’m uncomfortable with that,” Lee said.

Her approach to combating crime is two-fold. She’d like to see the city bring back its Violent Crimes Task Force and continue to put dollars toward policing. But the single-mom with a background in clinical social work said of equal importance is investing in programs that foster a healthy community.

Housing insecurity — for example — is something she’d like the city to address. But Lee said the emphasis can’t stop at getting a roof over somebody’s head.

“I know firsthand that building a brick structure and putting people in it doesn’t stop generational poverty,” said Lee, who spent three years directing HomeAid Tampa Bay. “Affordable housing needs to include wrap-around support services or we’re not doing people any favors.”

Lee also said the focus should extend beyond low income residents.

“I think ‘workforce housing’ is the word we need to adopt, because it’s our teachers, our first responders, our artists who can’t afford to live in St. Petersburg and have to travel in,” Lee said.

September 23, 2021

Community Voices: St. Pete’s hard truth: We have a murder problem


St. Peterburg is on pace to see a record number of murders this year. Following the home invasion and double murder of an 18 and 21-year-old on Sept. 17, 26 people have now been killed in the “Sunshine City.”  The record number of murders in one calendar year in St. Petersburg is 30, set in 2005.  Sadly, at this rate we will eclipse that number by Halloween.

Maress Scott, whose son was killed in 2019, has been distributing an anti-gun violence pledge in St. Petersburg which reads, “Instead of using a gun (or any other weapon), I will use my mind, my heart and my mouth to solve any issues.”

But Scott can’t do this alone. This needs to be a community effort. And this needs to be an issue our elected officials lead on.

It’s as if city officials are tone deaf to the innocent lives lost. 

What happened to the principle that our council members are the guardians of public safety in St. Peterburg? 

July 12, 2021

Who’s running in St. Petersburg’s District 1 City Council race?


Bobbie Shay Lee’s top priority is public safety, from fighting car theft in District 1 to “fully funding” law enforcement across the city.


The 48-year-old consultant and breast-cancer advocate, who has a master’s degree in policy and administration from Florida State University, wants to fight car theft in her district and address an underground plume of contaminated water at the site of the long-vacant Raytheon facility.

Her citywide priorities include giving law enforcement more funding to fight human trafficking and supporting children.

“I’m concerned about the kids that we lost from the system as a result of COVID, and getting them back in school, not the streets,” she said.

Lee wants to enforce the parents’ bill of rights, which went into effect this month. And she wants to “start with a blank sheet of paper” on the Tropicana Field redevelopment once a new mayor is elected. On affordable housing, she wants the city to pause new development while giving developers infill permits to help them make better use of existing space; she also supports a rent reduction program for groups like first responders, teachers and nonprofit workers.

Lee had raised $12,800 as of July 2. She’s been endorsed by by former Pinellas-Pasco Public Defender Bob Dillinger and his wife Kay, now local philanthropists; Seminole mayor and former state Rep. Leslie Waters; and former Pinellas County Commission candidate Tammy Vasquez.

Lee emphasized her experience with all levels of government. Although she has not held elected office, she’s been a lobbyist for Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas and has directed HomeAid Tampa Bay and the Center for Transparency, both nonprofit organizations.

“I have experience both at the local, state and federal level,” she said.

June 21, 2021

The field is set in St. Petersburg’s elections for mayor, City Council


Edwin Carlson, Copley Gerdes, John Hornbeck and Bobbie Shay Lee qualified for the District 1 City Council race. They’re running to replace Blackmon after he launched his bid for mayor.

June 9, 2021

Bobbie Shay Lee latest entrant into race for St. Pete City Council District 1


Lee is regarded as a national advocate for health care and consumer protection.

Former Buccaneers cheerleader and local lobbyist Bobbie Shay Lee has filed to run for St. Petersburg City Council District 1.

Lee, a registered Republican, is the third candidate to enter the race to succeed Councilmember Robert Blackmon after he announced his mayoral bid, leaving the District 1 seat open. Currently, she will face lawyer John Hornbeck, who ran unsuccessfully against Blackmon for the seat in 2019, and retired dentist Ed Carlson, known as “Dr. Ed.”

Democrat Copley Gerdes, son of Blackmon’s predecessor Charlie Gerdes, is also considering a run.

Lee is the former founder and director of The Center for Transparency and served as executive director of HomeAide Tampa Bay. She is regarded as a national advocate for health care and consumer protection.

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