By Christopher J. Russo, Former City Manager
(Thursday, June 1, 2017) – Janes A. Hines served Sunny Isles Beach faithfully for over 17 years. Hired in 2000 as an Agenda Coordinator, Jane quickly proved herself worthy of more responsibility and was promoted to Deputy City Clerk in February of 2002, then to City Clerk in February 2003, a position she maintained until her passing this past April. Through those years, Jane has sworn in two Mayors and seven Commissioners and has conducted several municipal and special elections, including 4 presidential elections with record turnout.
Quietly busy and hard at work, Jane’s demeanor matched her position well. She avoided the spotlight and reliably took care of things behind the scenes. Under her direction, the Office of the City Clerk prepared numerous agendas and minutes, maintained all public records and record requests, issued public notices, maintained compliance with the Sunshine Laws for the State of Florida, presided over many bid openings among other duties, as well as moving into the digital age or record retention and easy public access to City documents through the website.
Jane was dedicated, diligent and responsible. When not toiling away at her computer, Jane enjoyed her vacations. She worked hard to earn her time away and found great pleasure in her cruises and trips up north. She valued her relationships with her colleagues, all of whom cherished their time with her. Jane was genuine, kind and had a smile for everyone she encountered.
On Sunday, April 16, 2017, the City silently said goodbye to Jane for one final time as she passed away peacefully. Just as she would want, with no fanfare, we honored her quietly. All City flags remained lowered at half-staff in her memory between April 17 and Sunday, April 23, 2017. We will continue to honor her with a memorial plaque that will be installed on the 4th floor of the Government Center, the floor she worked on since the opening of city hall in February 2005. It reads: “Dedicated to our dear friend and City Clerk, Jane A. Hines, who quietly exemplified hard work, integrity and kindness. She is greatly missed and forever in our hearts.” Additionally, one employee each year will be awarded the Jane A. Hines Memorial Award in her name. This special award from the City Manager will honor an employee that excels during the year in a way that exemplifies Jane’s work ethic and commitment to quality in a selfless fashion.
Although initially I wanted to dedicate this entire article to Jane, she would want everyone to know that the Office of the City Clerk remains strong and ready to serve the Commission, employees and the public. Jane knew that as a key component to the municipal government, there could never be a lapse of service by her Office. In true team spirit, Jane was an advocate for her employees and ensured they had opportunities to learn and grow. Under her guidance, Mauricio Betancur was developed into her Deputy City Clerk. She would want you to know that Mauricio is filling in as Acting City Clerk, just as she had prepared him for. He will continue to do so until such time that a permanent replacement is announced.
Jane believed fervently in her role in City Government and she passed this pride and dedication on to her entire team. Luz Rey is also stepping in to assist Mauricio as he takes on this expanded role. The team that Jane built will continue her legacy in their daily work.
We thank you Jane for your faithful service to the City and the community of Sunny Isles Beach. You will be missed.