2014 Summer Newsletter

Florida Chapter of IAAO

Summer 2014

Staying Appraised


The 2014 annual conference and business meeting was a resounding success. Our members enjoyed an excellent educational program as well as networking opportunities at the breakfast sponsored by Walgreens and the Welcome Reception once again sponsored by Thomson Reuters. Some photos of the event are on pages 12 and 13 , but the full catalog of photos is available on the Chapter’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/FCIAAO . If you did not attend you should make plans for next year. We will be convening at the newly built Embassy Suites in Kissimmee on April 15th-17th. Coming up this year, however, is our annual TPP conference held once again at the Marriott Lake Mary hotel and conference center. It will be held the second week of December (details forthcoming). If you would like to present at the seminar or have some suggestions for content, see page 6 for instructions.


President’s Message ........... 2

Committee Update ............. 3

Rebranding ........................... 4

Past President Message ..... 5

County Spotlight .................. 7

Professional Designation .... 8

IAAO News You Can Use…10

Conference Recap………… 11

Python Scripting ................... 14

Member Spotlight ............... 15

Have a great summer!

2014-2015 FCIAAO



I would like to first thank members of the FCIAAO for allowing me to serve as your President for the 2014 – 2015 year! Along with your Board of Directors, I am excited about our future. If you will bear with me in this message to share your accomplishments! Florida is one of the most innovative IAAO states and our members work hard to


Alice Weinberg Community Service Director Seminole County


Todd Finlayson, CFE Director of TPP St. Lucie County

Alice Weinberg


Brian Loughrey, CFE Administrative Director Sarasota County

make that happen! As you may be aware, this organization has received the prestigious ―IAAO Outstanding Chapter of the Year Award‖, sixteen times. We have just submitted our application for the 2014 award and hope we will be considered and awarded at the August Annual Conference in Sacramento. We are proud to have 64 Professional Designees as chapter members – a track record that has allowed us to receive the Virginia Cup five times – recognizing our chapter as a top contender for five internationally recognized designations. There are 11 jurisdictions in Florida who have been awarded the IAAO Certificate of Excellence in Assessment Administration. Keep in mind only twenty-six jurisdictions have received it internationally! And we hope more Florida jurisdictions will choose to submit their application this year! Florida Chapter members serve on eleven IAAO Committees and attend annual Leadership meetings in Kansas City. They are appointed by the IAAO President and Executive Board. Exciting news launched at the recent conference is the new FCIAAO logo and website. We hope you are visiting the new site and are interested in your ideas on how we can better serve our membership. On the ―social media‖ front – please visit our Facebook page and ―like‖ it immediately! A recent informative lunch meeting was held and included FCIAAO Past Presidents who were attending the conference, along with the current and incoming chapter Presidents. The purpose of the meeting is to honor and receive recommendations from those who have served. In attendance were: Sissy Long (1996), Honorable Roger Suggs (2000), Fred Jefson (2002), Megan Hill (2003), Doug Will (2006), Dorothy Jacks


Justin Edwards, CFE Office Operations Supervisor Putnam County


Tracy Drake, CAE, RES, AAS, CFE Assistant Property Appraiser Clay County


Katie Casey, CFE Senior Projects Administrator Seminole County


Marsha Coleman, CFE Director of Tax Rolls Citrus County

DIRECTOR Pat Alesandrini, MAI,, SRA, CAE,, RES

Director of Valuation Hillsborough County


John Watterson, GISP, CFE GIS Specialist Martin County


Neil ―Nick‖ Nikkinen, AAS, CFE Real Estate Assessment Dep. Director


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO

(2008), Sheila Crapo (2012), Lainie Claudio (2013), Nick Nikkinen (2014 – Current) and Alice Weinberg (Incoming). Discussion ensured regarding FCIAAO historical information with particular attention to the previous logo and the newly re-designed logo. Several recommendations were made to enhance the organization and those will be addressed by the new Board of Directors. I hope you will enjoy the contents of the Summer Issue of the chapter’s newsletter. We are always interested in including articles of interest so please let us know if you have ideas. Looking forward to an exciting and educationally informative year for our members!


Alice J. Weinberg President


For the very first time, the FCIAAO introduced a steering committee structure charged with planning the IT/GIS track for the annual 2014 FCIAAO Conference. The 2014 IT/GIS Steering Committee was fortunate to have talented and motivated members. I think records were set for the number of webinars we conducted! Our first main task was identifying relevant IT/GIS topics for the track. This produced a lively discussion on the ever-changing IT/GIS world. We then had to create a ―Call for Presentations‖ letter that was sent to each Property Appraiser in Florida. Through the exceptional writing skills of one of

John Watterson, GISP, CFE

our members, we developed a very polished and professional letter. After sending the letter, we did not receive a large number of abstracts, so we then began calling counties to personally email them the letter and encourage their participation. This proved more successful as we received several more abstracts. Finally, we voted on which abstracts to select and notified the submitters with congratulations and thank you letters. We had several items to review before the conference including technical requirements, bios, etiquette and other coordination activities. Our executive board liaison was a great help through the whole process. All the hard work paid off as we had a very smooth track with excellent, interactive presentations. I know all of the members felt that being on the IT/GIS steering committee was a rewarding experience, and it was great to develop friendships that will last for years.


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


In case you missed it at the FCIAAO annual conference in Fort Lauderdale held April 30 – May 2, the FCIAAO recently launched a rebranding effort by redesigning both our logo and website. The logo was displayed on all collateral conference materials. The logo will now be used on all future chapter materials. We felt our website www.fciaao.org needed to be redesigned to freshen up the look and to make it easier for the membership and board to navigate and use the site. The redesign adds additional functionality on the backend of the site so that the executive board

John Watterson, GISP, CFE

can easily update and change the site as needed to keep providing fresh relevant information to the membership. FCIAAO President Alice Weinberg says, ―The goal of the FCIAAO is to launch a site that reflects the latest tools, informative data, educational resources, and networking opportunities that FCIAAO members expect. As with all websites, the FCIAAO site is a work in progress and the chapter encourages member input to improve it and enhance this resource!‖ One change you may notice with the site is a Members section where you can find a Directory of FCIAAO Members, Presenter Materials, Newsletters, Downloads and Board Minutes. The members section is secured by your FCIAAO login, if you have any issues with your login please contact Katie Casey at Katie@scpafl.org . We updated our logo to identify more closely with the newly redesigned IAAO logo. During the process of development a series of prototypes were developed for review by chapter leaders. Initial designs used graphic elements from the new IAAO logo. Once a slate of drafts were created and agreed upon by the chapter, the board then submitted the drafts to the IAAO Communications Committee for review and feedback. We wanted to make sure we didn’t

conflict with IAAO Procedural Rules. What we found was that the IAAO Procedural Rules had never addressed IAAO logo use by chapters. Based upon our development process a revision to the Procedural Rules were drafted and approved. Once we had approval and recommendations from IAAO, the Executive board made the final decision and the new FCIAAO logo was born.


Portia Lemessy Clark, St. Lucie County

Ruben Curiel, Miami-Dade County

Opal Hudson, Hillsborough County

Greg Lafakis, GJL Esp., LLC


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


When I took the oath of office as your president one year ago in Sarasota, one of the major goals I had was to reenergize and empower the committees.

I am proud to report that this goal was achieved and several others were accomplished along the way as well.

The old Presentation Research Committee was dissolved in favor of the new Real Property and IT/GIS Steering Committees, which were staffed with experts in their respective fields. Tangible results of that restructuring were evident in the stellar presentations offered at the annual conference in Ft. Lauderdale last month. Additionally, a policies and procedures manual was developed and modeled after IAAO’s to ensure the committee’s success long into the future.

Neil “Nick” Nikkinen, AAS, CFE

More organizational items were identified and improved, such as securing 27 years’ worth of historic files of the chapter into a digital format and creating a Google Docs account for the executive board to easily access and share forms and correspondence between each other and future boards. Job descriptions for each director were revised to ensure your board stays abreast with technological changes. Speaking of which, the board is now cable of accepting credit cards and PayPal for dues and registration fees, a long-awaited improvement. But the largest and most noticeable accomplishment was the rebranding of the Florida Chapter IAAO and the redesign of the website. For those of you who have ever tackled a similar project in your jurisdiction, you know this was no small feat. Directors Justin Edwards and Katie Casey were presented with the 2014 President’s Award for their outstanding work with these projects.

I’ve received many good and reassuring comments from our past presidents about the logo and website, and I hope you are as pleased with the results as I am.

These accomplishments could not have been achieved without the exceptional and relentless efforts of this great Executive Board and those who preceded us. To each and every one of the fine people I’ve served with over the past 13 years, I offer a heartfelt thank you. It has been my humble pleasure and honor to serve as your 2013-2014 FCIAAO President, and I look forward to seeing what new and innovative things this board will accomplish under the leadership of President Alice Weinberg.

Neil ―Nick‖ Nikkinen, AAS, CFE FCIAAO Immediate Past President


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


The Florida Department of Revenue has provided its education schedule for the upcoming year. While all of the course topics are not yet selected, the dates of four schools and locations for two are currently set. We will provide additional information as it becomes available. The current schedules of schools are as follows: December 8-12, 2014 – Lake Mary – Four IAAO Courses

March 2015 – Tallahassee – Four IAAO Courses

May 2015 – Location TBD – Three to four IAAO Courses and Continuing Education Workshop for Property Appraisers

August 2015 – Location TBD - Four IAAO Courses

We will update you as more information is forthcoming from DOR. Other courses may be offered on request as needed .


The 2014 FCIAAO Annual TPP Seminar is on the horizon and the steering committee is asking you to recommend topics or speakers that you would like to hear. Please contact TPP Chair: Christopher Mitts, CFE, mittsc@paslc.org – as soon as possible with your ideas! The seminar will be held in December (2nd week) at the Marriott Hotel, Lake Mary, during the same time as DOR classes are being presented. Make plans now as rooms and meeting space will be filled! The Steering Committee will select speakers and topic presentations immediately and seminar information will be sent out. Typical presentation time slots range from 1 – 1 ½ hours and multiple presenters and innovative viewpoints are always welcome. Florida Chapter Executive Board will assist with planning and technical assistance during the TPP week.


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


Dixie County, which is located in the Northwestern portion of Florida, was founded on April 25, 1921. In April of 1773 William Bartram started his four year journey of the southern parts of America. During his journey, he came to an Indian village on the east side of the Suwannee River where he stayed for several days. Bartram crossed the river into pre- sent day Dixie County. He witnessed "large handsome canoes, which were formed out of the trunks of Cypress trees, some of them

Hon. Robert A. Lee

commodious enough to accommodate twenty to thirty warriors. In April of 1818 Andrew Jackson led the largest army ever to invade Flor- ida , to the Old Town (now Dixie County), Florida area to push the Indi- ans south of the Suwannee River. 1822 Florida Territory was organized. General Andrew Jackson was appointed Florida's first Territorial Gover- nor.

1845 Florida was admitted to the union, making it the 27th state to join the union. At this time, Madison County, Florida extended from the Florida/Georgia state line south to the Gulf; and west from the Suwan- nee River to the Aucilla River. In 1856 the lower half of Madison County would be divided into Taylor and Lafayette Counties.

December 12, 1856, James W. McQueen, House of Representatives, from Madison County (lived in Old Town) introduced the bill to create two new counties. It was passed. (Mr. McQueen is buried in the Old Town Cemetery.)

2013 Preliminary Tax Roll At-A Glance Real Property Parcels 16,313

This bill was signed by Governor Hardee to form Dixie County from the Southern portion of Lafayette County. Two of the elected Lafayette County Com- missioners finished off their terms in the newly formed Dixie County at the request of the Governor. The county seat is Cross City, and if you look at an aerial view of the County, Cross City appears to be in the

Tangible Accounts


Just (Market) Value


Taxable Value


dead center of Dixie. Some of the surrounding counties are Lafayette to the North, Taylor to the North- west, Gilchrist to the East and Levy to the Southeast. Dixie is bordered by the Gulf of Mexico to the Southwest as well as having the Steinhatchee River on its West and the Suwannee River on the East. Of the approximate 864 square miles, 704 is land and 160 is water. Dixie allows for many adventures to explore. Fresh and Saltwater fishing is plentiful here. There are also several little known springs around the county and often during the winter months manatees can be viewed here. Fanning Springs is always at 72 degrees for those who like water activities. Birding can be done all year long with various species able to be viewed during certain seasons. With three types of hunting enviro-systems (private clubs, state managed and Federal wildlife refuges) Dixie has been

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Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


At the 2014 FCIAAO Annual Conference, PDC Chairman Michael Chaves, CAE and I had the privilege of recognizing the record-setting 14 new IAAO professional designees and Tony Hodge Award Recipients. The completion of a designation is a very difficult, but rewarding experience and the recognition of this achievement can never be overstated. Additionally, we were able to acknowledge existing designees and the members of the PDC. As I have mentioned in previous newsletters, the FCIAAO Chapter is poised to win the IAAO Virginia Cup; the winner will be announced at the IAAO Annual Conference .

Tracy S. Drake, CAE, RES, AAS, CFE

The 2014 Tony Hodge Award Recipients with PDC Chairman Michael Chaves, CAE (far right) and Executive Board Member/AAS Advisor Tracy S. Drake, CAE, RES, AAS (far left).

The Tony Hodge Award is granted to FCIAAO members who earn their IAAO designation. At the 2015 FCIAAO Annual Conference, the Executive Board will recognize the hard work of new designees and present them with a $250 check! To be eligible, new designees must be a FCIAAO member in good standing for 12 months prior to being awarded their IAAO designation. New designees should email a copy of IAAO’s letter conferring the designation to Michael Chaves, PDC Chairman ( mmc@miamidade.gov ).


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


IAAO designees are expected to continue professional growth by participating in educational events and are required to fulfill continuing education requirements in order to maintain their designation. The following information outlines the recertification program and its requirements: •Recertification cycles begin on January 1st and continue for five consecutive years, ending on De- cember 31st. For a new designee, the recertification cycle begins on January 1st immediately follow- ing the date the designation is conferred. •Designees (with the exception of CMS) are required to complete at least two 7-hour USPAP update courses. •Designees (optional for CMS) are required to complete IAAO Workshop 171 (classroom or online) dur- ing the five-year cycle. •Credit hours can be reported to Matt Hernandez ( hernandez@iaao.org ) in January or February of each year, or when all recertification requirements have been fulfilled. More information regarding designation recertification, including the Procedure for Completing Con- tinuing Education Log, the Recertification Extension Applications, and IAAO Procedural Rules can be view at www.iaao.org . •All designees must complete at least 70 credit hours during each recertification cycle.


Please be advised that the requirements for the RES designation will be changing. According to the IAAO:

members applying for candidacy on or after January 1, 2015, must,

prior to receiving the RES designation, hold a Bachelor’s degree or

higher from an accredited college or university.


The IAAO Executive Board has established a Scholarship Fund for the purpose of promoting ad valorem appraisal professionalism. The Scholarship Fund is available to all IAAO members who need financial assistance to:

•Attend IAAO educational activities

•Attend the IAAO Annual Conference

•Attain an IAAO professional designation

•Perform research

The Jeff Hunt, CAE, Memorial Candidates Trust grants financial assistance to professional designation candidates who demonstrate financial need and intend to use the funds to complete the require- ments of a professional designation. You may contact the IAAO Education Manager ( spiegel@iaao.org ) or visit www.iaao.org for more information.


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


At each IAAO Annual Conference, individual and organizational achievements in the assessment industry are recognized during the Awards Luncheon. One award of particular interest to the FCIAAO is the Outstanding Chapter/Affiliate of the Year (COY) Award. This award is conferred on an IAAO chapter or affiliate organization that has made an outstanding contribution to the realization of the mission of IAAO. The FCIAAO diligently pursues the goal of being one of the best chapters in the world. Our commitment to that goal has resulted in receiving the COY Award a record sixteen (16) times! Over the past year the FCIAAO Executive Board made some exciting changes , including a new logo and website, new Facebook and LinkedIn pages, recently adopted Procedural Rules, restructured committees, and online payment capability for conferences, seminars and membership dues.

On May 1 st , our submission was sent to the IAAO for consideration of this prestigious award. The submission may be viewed on the chapter’s website.


IAAO will be celebrating their 80th anniversary at the 2014 Annual Conference August 24—27 in Sacramento, California.

IAAO will host over 100 IAAO Representatives, and Chapter and Affiliate leaders at a reception to be held at the upcoming Annual Conference in Sacramento, California. This not to be missed event provides a platform for the exchange of ideas as well as to celebrate the best IAAO has to offer. Historically, it is a ―speed brainstorming session‖ on a wide array of topics and allows networking for attendees. Your Chapter President and Florida Representatives will be there supporting the Florida Chapter IAAO!

Visit conference.iaao.org for more details!

IAAO Florida Representatives: Lainie Claudio—Marion County Sheila Crapo—Alachua County Dorothy Jacks—Palm Beach County


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


The 2014 – 2015 FCIAAO year began with a good start at the recent Annual Conference and Installation held in Ft. Lauderdale at Pier 66 Hyatt Regency with almost 200 attendees on April 30 th . Prior to the beginning of the conference, IAAO Instructor Pat Alesandrini conducted an IAAO Forum on Tuesday entitled: ―How to Critique an Appraisal‖ (917). Over 30 attendees took advantage of the opportunity – be sure to sign up for next year’s pre-conference forum in advance.

Opening the General Session was IAAO President Kim Lauffer followed by Broward County Property Appraiser, Lori Parrish, who welcomed our attendees to her county. Following these welcoming comments were several informative presentations and the recognition of the 2014 ―Tony Hodge Award‖ designees. Professional Designee Chairman Michael Chaves recognized 14 new designees! The first day of the conference ended with a Welcome Reception hosted by Thompson Reuters. Thursday began the Real Property, Exemption, and IT/GIS Education Tracks arranged by the respective committees. These committees have been working diligently the past few months to provide exciting topics and speakers. Attendees received CE credits for their attendance. If you were unable to attend, you will find informational presenter materials on the FCIAAO website. Thursday evening festivities kicked off with a reception that included a photo booth sponsored by Bruce Harris and attendees enjoyed setting up candid shots with fellow members. The Annual Business meeting followed and recognition of special attendees, committee members and new designees. Officers for 2014 – 2015 were installed and included: Alice Weinberg (President); Todd Finlayson (1 st Vice President); Brian Loughrey (2 nd Vice President); Tracy Drake (Secretary); Justin Edwards (Treasurer); Katie Casey (Membership Director); Marsha Coleman (Director); Pat Alesandrini (Director) and John Watterson (Director). Neil Nikkinen will serve as Immediate Past President. The Installing Officers were IAAO President, Kim Lauffer and Seminole County Property Appraiser, David Johnson. The conference ended mid-day Friday and began with a networking breakfast for attendees and a separate breakfast for committee members. Following breakfast, final presentations included a Legislative Update by Honorable Lake County Property Appraiser Carey Baker and Legal Update by Gaylord ―Jay‖ Wood, Esquire.

If you missed this year’s conference, be sure to plan on attending next year’s to be held: Wednesday, April 15 -17 th (2015) in Osceola County at the Embassy Suites (Orlando-Lake Buena Vista South) located at 4955 Kyngs Heath Road, Kissimmee, Florida. The FCIAAO conference committee is excited about holding our conference in this county, hosted by Osceola County Property Appraiser, Katrina Scarborough! Make plans to attend!


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO



Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO

FCIAAO extends special thanks to:

Property Appraisers in Attendance:

Hon. David Nolte

Indian River County

Hon. Sharon Outland

St Johns County

Hon. Ed Crapo

Alachua County

Hon. Scott Russell

Monroe County

Hon. Pam Dubov

Pinellas County

Hon. Katrina Scarborough

Osceola County

Hon. John Emerson

Hernando County

Hon. Rick Singh

Orange County

Hon. Bill Furst

Sarasota County

Hon. Roger Suggs

Clay County

Hon. Bob Henriquez

Hillsborough County

Hon. Ken Wilkinson

Lee County

Hon. Mike Hickox

Nassau County

Hon. David Johnson

Seminole County

Our Vendors for their generosity:

Apex Software



Tyler Technologies

Axis Data Solutions

Lexis Nexis


Vision Govt. Solutions

Bruce Harris & Assoc.

Lexur Appraisal Svcs.

TC Delivers



Patriot Properties

Thomson Reuters



True Automation


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


As a GIS professional, do you find yourself doing a GIS workflow repeatedly, whether daily, weekly, or monthly? If the answer is yes, you may want to take a serious look at the Python programming language. Python has come bundled with ESRI’s ArcGIS Desktop for several releases now for the purpose of automating GIS /geoprocessing workflows. It has long been promoted by ESRI, whose software most property appraiser office mapping/GIS departments use. The Martin County Property Appraiser’s Office has been using Python since 2008. I first heard of it from a colleague at a GIS conference, and became interested when he said that it was easy to learn. I was surprised, because I had never heard of a programming language that was easy to learn, and I had never considered myself a programmer. However, I was still interested

John Watterson, GISP, CFE

and decided to investigate. Initially, I could not find any training material for Python with GIS, but then came upon on a company and website: Geospatial Training Services ( www.geospatialtraining.com ). The website turned out to be quite a find because Geospatial Training Services has a very strong training department. They had a self-paced GIS Python course that was inexpensive (well under $200.00). I decided to give it a try and bought the course. A booklet of course slides was mailed to me, along with a CD containing audible lectures with the same slides in my course book. Also included were course exercise documents with accompanying GIS data. I took the course and my colleague was indeed right, Python is an easy programming language for GIS purposes. The course was clear and interesting, and I couldn’t wait to write my first script. If you are a GIS professional using GIS/geoprocessing tools you should not be intimidated by this language, not at all.

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Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO

Python has some big benefits. Once a script is written, that may initially take some time, the script can simply be run, and will perform all those GIS tasks you used to do manually. This is a huge time saver. Also, human error is eliminated, since all scripts will be debugged and tested. The scripts can be run while working, leaving you free to do other tasks. Even better, Python scripts can also be run as scheduled tasks on your computer at any time. The return on investment for Python training in the Martin County Property Appraiser’s Office has been significant. Now that so many redundant geoprocessing workflows have been automated, my schedule has been freed up to work on other projects. Countless hours have been saved in my schedule. A few years ago, when doing a return on investment study, I asked our Appraisal Services Department Manager how much time a GIS dataset created with Python saved her appraisers. She said it was ―unquantifiable‖. And, of course, we know that savings in time also leads to savings in dollars. In the GIS industry, it is recognized that learning programming is one of the best ways to understand what is ―under the hood‖ in GIS, how GIS really works internally. And one can never fully utilize ArcGIS Desktop without Python. Hence, Python skills are in high demand in the GIS job marketplace. In addition to the self-paced courses mentioned above, ESRI has released excellent self-paced, web- based GIS courses, along with instructor lead training. Geospatial Training Services also has virtual and instructor led training. GIS publications focused on Python are now available in the marketplace and can be easily found on Amazon. Along with taking GIS Python courses, another great resource for writing Python scripts is using ―ArcGIS Desktop Help‖ for a particular geoprocessing tool. At the end of the help page are syntax requirements to use a tool in Python, along with script examples which can be cut and paste into your own scripts. Twelve Python scripts are used at the Martin County Property Appraiser’s Office, three of which are particularly vital to our office and the public. One script automatically exports our tax map books in GIS (ArcMap) to folders for placement on our website. These map books were previously exported manually. We also use a script that creates parcel GIS data with CAMA data attached in the attribute table for placement on the web. We have now seen a virtual elimination of calls from GIS professionals on how to accomplish this on their own. Finally, we use a script that creates property value text that is used in our appraisal GIS software package (Parcel Analyst) for valuing properties accurately. This script has saved our office large quantities of time. In conclusion, Python is a valuable tool in GIS that can make you and your co-workers more efficient. If you are a GIS professional using GIS/geoprocessing tools you should not be intimidated by this language, not at all.


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO


What do you do for the PA?

With the title, Chief Deputy of Appraisal Services, my duties are to oversee all departments that produce values for the tax roll. Those departments include residential, commercial, land, agricultural, and TPP. I also guide and direct those departments through the VAB process. I’m blessed to work with an in- credible staff of managers and appraisers who are dedicated, competent, and engaged on a daily basis.

How long have you been employed by the PA?

I have been employed with the Leon County Property Appraiser’s office since 1991, where I started as a field appraiser. My background is the construction industry in which I was a subcontractor for a number of years, and then as a

Doug Will, AAS, CFE

Florida licensed home builder during the 1980’s. Believe me, that decade was a tough time to build homes with interest rates in double digits. But it was the perfect training ground for becoming an ap- praiser. Remember the cost approach from IAAO course 101? I got it (except that depreciation stuff was all new). With several IAAO courses under my belt, I felt this industry was the right fit for me, and I re-enrolled at FSU and finished my degree with a real estate major, at the ripe old age of 44. I find the most satisfaction in this job by what I call ―theory building‖, which consists of building models for mass appraisal while staying true to appraisal theory. We are constantly kicking around ideas for market areas, structure costs, wall rates, and land value models among others. Another reason I enjoy this work is that each day brings something new and challenging, which mitigates repetition and bore- dom for me. What do you like most about your job?

Tell us about your involvement with FCIAAO

I have been a member of the Florida Chapter for 20 years, and I served on the board of directors for 10 years. As a former director, treasurer, and past president of FCIAAO, I consider this organization my family away from home. I believe it is vital to my development in the assessment business to have this chapter bring together folks from around the state, to learn from one another and to share ideas.

Are you a member of IAAO?

I recently celebrated 15 years as a member of the IAAO. I attend the international conferences when possible, and my staff participates in some of the webinars as well. Since 2006 I have been an instruc- tor for IAAO, and I teach two or three times a year. I’m pretty passionate about the material, which should be obvious to those of you who may have been in one of my classes. I love teaching, I really do.

Where were you born?

I was born in the town of Ephrata, in Lancas- ter County, Pennsylvania. Lancaster County has a huge population of Amish families, quaint towns, and beautiful rolling hills dot- ted with Amish farms. It’s quite a picture. My family moved from Ephrata to Jackson- ville, Florida when I was but three years old, so my memory is limited to visiting relatives over the years. However, the past 42 years

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Lancaster, PA


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO

I have called Tallahassee home, and I’ve grown to love this area.

Where was your best vacation ever?

Several years ago my wife and I were able to travel to Maui, where we spent a little more than a week. Obviously, the weather and the scenery were incredible. We made our base on the west side of the island which is more for us tourists, but we traveled to the east end where we met up with friends who live there, and we ―lived‖ Hawaiian. Experiencing the islands like a local was awesome.

What do you plan to do when you retire?

My wife and I have 11 acres that we call home, and I spend a lot of time on mowers and tractors, so I’m quite sure I will be doing the same when I retire. Since I will be better able to keep up on the chores, we can spend more time at the beaches of South Walton County, which is our preferred desti- nation of leisure. Treat yourself sometime to the cities of Seaside, Watercolor, or Rosemary Beach, on highway 30-A. They are beautiful.

Doug’s view in Maui

11 acres of paradise

Doug Will recently termed off the FCIAAO Board of Directors. The years of service to this organization by Doug is unsurpassed and his expertise and humor have provided calm in times of stress. All of us have benefitted from his watchful eyes over our finances for every conference and seminar held by this organization for years. Doug has served tirelessly and has mentored many members through his FCIAAO affiliation and through his work as an IAAO instructor. We will miss him, but know he will always be there for the Florida Chapter!


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known as one of Florida’s finest hunting territories for white tailed deer, turkey, wild hog and small game. There is a hiking/bicycling trail spanning from Cross City to the Suwanee River with photo op- portunities that lie around every corner. The rivers allow for spectacular canoeing and kayaking and for those scuba diving enthusiasts, Dixie offers the historic City of Hawkinsville underwater State Park, cave diving in Manatee Springs and Gulf Diving. The Nature Coast State Recreational trail goes from Cross City to Chiefland or Trenton which is 22 miles to either city.


Summer 2014 Newsletter of the FCIAAO

Mission Statement

―To offer relevant educational opportunities in ad valorem appraisal and administra-

tion, and to promote professional development of our members.‖

A publication by the Florida Chapter of International Association of Assessing Officers

Made with