Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Carlton: Greco might run for mayor, but not that one

Dick “Dickie” Greco isn’t ruling out a mayoral run.

Dick “Dickie” Greco isn’t ruling out a mayoral run.

Yes, I know the race to replace Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn is a long 20 months away. In politics, practically forever.

But around here, it's never too early to speculate when a particularly juicy tidbit happens our way. So here goes.

Along with a former police chief, at least two City Council members, assorted former politicians, possibly an architect and at least one unnamed mystery member of the business community, how about a candidate named Dick Greco on the 2019 ballot?

As in, the name of the guy who ran this city for four terms and tried for a fifth.

As in, a well-known, bi-county man-about-town who's an integral part of his city's history.

Okay, not him.

Close, though.

[Times files]

Former Tampa Mayor Dick Greco and his wife, Dr. Linda McClintock, in 2016.

Here we are talking about the former mayor's son of the same name, retired Hillsborough Judge Dick Greco. (Though he's known far and wide as Dickie to differentiate for the obvious reasons. It wasn't just his dad — his grandfather, the former mayor's father, was called Dick, too.)

Could this rumor of a new generation Greco candidacy be true?

"I would say at this point it is not out of the realm of possibility," says the younger Greco when I call.

He is 63, Tampa-born-and-raised. He retired from the bench in January after 20 years as both a county and circuit judge, with a stint in private practice in between. He was affable and liked at a courthouse where he currently works as a senior judge.

[Times files]

Tampa mayoral candidate Dick Greco concedes to candidates Rose Ferlita and Bob Buckhorn at Higgins Hall in Tampa on March 1, 2011.

This wacky mayor idea only just came up in recent weeks with friends and family.

So is he seriously considering it?

He wouldn't say "seriously," but he is definitely considering it, he says, a rather judicial response.

"Seems like it would be a great way to serve the community," he says, a more savvy political one.

You could call this a potential game changer.

Jane Castor is the unofficial mayoral candidate who enjoys the most overall name recognition due to her high-profile stint as Tampa's rock star of a police chief. "Dickie?" she says at the news. "I like Dickie. We used to see each other a lot at the courthouse."

Current mayor Buckhorn: "The son? No kidding!"

City Council member Mike Suarez, who is expected to run for mayor himself: "What? . . . okay . . . interesting."

Probable candidate and City Council member Harry Cohen: "I think it's great that so many people want to serve the city."

RELATED: Former Tampa Mayor Dick Greco taught me everything I know about love

So what if Greco-the-junior hasn't decided. Never stopped us from handicapping a race before, has it?

Buckhorn points out the Greco name is known and respected, and that the father is "revered as a Tampa treasure." But this is also a very different town from when Greco-the-elder ran it.

"I don't think anyone loved the job the way he did," says his son, the rumored-possible-but-who-knows candidate.

Here's the for sure part: Whoever's next up at City Hall, it won't be boring getting there.

Carlton: Greco might run for mayor, but not that one 07/11/17 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 11, 2017 9:08am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Pasco residents affected by Irma invited to town hall meeting

    Local Government

    NEW PORT RICHEY — Representatives from Pasco County Emergency Management and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will play host to a town hall-style meeting from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday in the first-floor boardroom of the West Pasco Government Center, 8731 Citizens Drive, New Port Richey

    Sandra Cunningham assesses the damage a water oak did to her Church Avenue home when it crashed into her bedroom roof during Hurricane Irma.
  2. Lightning's Nikita Kucherov has a lot to say — about moving on to a much better season

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Nikita Kucherov sits back in his stall and smiles.

    Laughs a little, too.

    Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov (86) prepares for a faceoff during the first period of Friday's  (9/22/17) preseason game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Nashville Predators at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  3. Clearwater man shot, seriously injured

    Crime

    CLEARWATER — A shooting Sunday morning in unincorporated Clearwater left one man seriously injured, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

  4. Mother of double amputee Ireland Nugent to lose her own lower right leg

    Human Interest

    Ever since Ireland Nugent lost both her lower legs in a lawn-mowing accident five years ago, the Clearwater girl has inspired her mother, Nicole Del Corpo-Nugent, with the courage she has shown in overcoming the tragedy.

    Nicole Del Corpo-Nugent, left, looked on as her daughter Ireland threw out the first pitch when the Tampa Bay Rays played the Houston Astros at Tropicana Field on June 22, 2014. Jerry Nugent held his daughter for the pitch. Now Nicole Del Corpo-Nugent is facing surgery to amputate her own lower right leg due to a rare infection. WILL VRAGOVIC  |  Times (2014)
  5. Chris Archer knocked out early as Rays lose to Orioles (w/video)

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — Another short outing by Chris Archer led to another long afternoon for the Rays in a 9-4 loss to the Orioles on Sunday.

    Chris Archer has not gotten past four innings in four of his past five starts. [WILL VRAGOVIC | Times]