Mark Sharpe is a Tampa native and served on the Hillsborough County Commission in the Countywide District 7 seat from 2004 to 2014 and most recently as the Board's Chairman before completing his final term in office in November. He is an advocate of innovation and is currently directing his passion for a better Tampa Bay to the private sector and leading the Tampa Innovation Alliance to create an Innovation District in the University of South Florida area. Mark will share what he has learned over the past decade in office, his engagement with the Startup Community, Educators and Transportation and how that impacted his decision to take on this new role and help entrepreneurs and innovative companies succeed in our community.
In addition to USF, the area has notable STEAM organizations place such as Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute and MOSi/The Museum of Science and Industry. Geographically the area includes parts of the city of Tampa and unincorporated Hillsborough County.
Prior to his election, Mark served eight years as an active-duty officer in the U.S. Navy. He retired after two decades of service, which included 12 years in the U.S. Naval Reserves. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in multinational business from Florida State University, he earned a master’s degree in strategic studies from the University of South Florida.
Mark has also served on the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority, Metropolitan Planning Organization and served three years on Hillsborough County’s Transportation Task Force. Additionally, he represented the Board of County Commissioners on Tampa Bay Water and the Museum of Science and Industry; served as a board director for Tampa Bay Partnership for Regional Economic Development and Workforce Florida, Inc.