Biography for Mayor Shirley Groover Bryant

Shirley Groover Bryant is a native of Palmetto, Florida.  She graduated from Palmetto High School, Manatee Community College (now SCF), and Florida Southern College.  She studied economics and accounting, which serves her well as she manages a city government with a budget of $32 million.

Mayor Bryant worked for 15 years at Manatee County Property Appraiser’s Office.  She was the Chief Financial Officer for Manatee School for the Arts.  She was City of Palmetto Ward 2 Representative from 1993 – 2004 and in 2008 she was elected as Mayor of the City of Palmetto, where she continues to serve today.  

Mayor Bryant’s top priorities are accountability to the taxpayers, fiscal responsibility, and transparency in Palmetto’s government. In addition, her efforts are directed at improving Palmetto through redevelopment and revitalization,while she humbly acknowledges that success is possible with the combined talents of her team. Along these lines, she has received the designation as a Redevelopment Professional or FRA-RP, Florida Redevelopment Association.

Mayor Bryant and her team seek to make more efficient use of limited tax dollars through the increased use of technology, and the search for grants and outside funding from state and federal agencies to best meet the needs of the citizens of Palmetto today and in the future.  

  • Mayor Bryant serves in the community in a variety of positions:
  • Chair, Sarasota-Manatee Metropolitan Planning Organization
  • Board Member, Manatee County Tourist Development Council
  • Board of Directors, Manatee Chamber of Commerce
  • Board of Directors, Bradenton Area Economic Development Corporation
  • Past President and Director Emeritus, Manatee River Fair Association, Inc.
  • Past President, Board of Directors of the Manatee County 4-H Foundation
  • Past Chair, Institute of Government Steering Committee
  • Palmetto Historical Commission
  • Manatee County Agricultural Museum
  • Manatee Hundred Club

Mayor Bryant counts it a privilege to participate in events for our First Responders and for Veterans, particularly the Veterans Day Parade.  Annually, she helps with Meals on Wheels and  Mayors’ Feed the Hungry.

Several of the projects that Mayor Bryant and her team have accomplished in the City of Palmetto are redevelopment of Sutton Park (Veterans Park), new MLK, Jr. Park, revitalization of the Riverside Park areas with expanded boat ramps, enhanced Gateway at 8th Avenue and Riverside Drive, incorporating multi-modal components to 10th Avenue, added gateway signage with landscape, and the Fifth Street “Green Street” project.  All of the city projects have included enhancements and upgrades such as pavers to improve storm water quality, landscape, plus pedestrian and transit user paths and cameras for safety.

Mayor Bryant has two adult sons.

Role of Mayor 

The Mayor of Palmetto is an elected Mayor and Palmetto is considered a “Strong Mayor” form of government. By Charter, the Mayor of Palmetto is the Chief Executive Officer of the city and has direct supervision over appointed officers. The appointed officers include the Chief of Police, the City Clerk, the Public Works Director, the City Attorney and the CRA Director.

The City Charter states that the Mayor may not vote on any action of the City Commission, including in the case of a tie. Accordingly, under the Florida Sunshine Law, the Mayor may consult with and discuss any subject with individual Commissioners.

The Mayor must be an elector and have been a legal resident of the city for a minimum of 365 consecutive days immediately prior to the last day of qualifying for election to the office. The term of office is four years.