By: Dale King
Boca Raton City Councilman Jeremy Rodgers will soon be hitting the high seas, on orders from the U.S. Navy to report in Qatar for support of NATO operations in Afghanistan.
Rodgers, a 5-year member of the council who has also been serving as deputy mayor, first brought the matter to the floor at the June 23 meeting. He has already begun the paperwork needed to depart South Florida for the Defense Department’s commanded journey.
“I am an officer in the Naval Reserve, and it is our job to be ready when our country needs us,” he said at the June meeting which, like all council sessions since the coronavirus pandemic, was conducted on Zoom.
“It is my turn to serve,” he added, noting that he will be dispatched to CentCom in Qatar in late August.
Admitting that “my heart will remain in Boca,” Rodgers said he hopes to complete his term in office by continuing to attend council meetings remotely. If that can’t be accomplished, the council member said he will submit a request for a leave of absence so another person can be appointed temporarily to his seat. These matters were to have been taken up at the July 28 council meeting.
Rodgers is also giving up his position as deputy mayor, saying, “The role is best filled by someone who is physically in the city.”
Elected to a three-year council term in 2015, he won re-election in 2018. When his current run of service on the council ends March 31, 2021, he will be term-limited from seeking re-election.
The councilman and his wife, Mandy, are parents of four children. Rodgers is employed by IBM and works on a technical sales engineering team, a post that involves considerable amounts of travel.
Council members wished their departing colleague well at the conclusion of the June 23 meeting.
“Thanks for your service to the city and ongoing service to the nation,” said Mayor Scott Singer. “We will miss you.”
“Please stay safe,” admonished council member Monica Mayotte.
“We will miss you, Deputy Mayor Rodgers,” said Andy Thomson. “Godspeed, sailor.”