As a distinguished Elections Administrator, Supervisor Julie Marcus has been around the Supervisor of Elections’ Office since 1999.
Then-Supervisor Dorothy Ruggles, invited Marcus, who was studying Political Science at the University of South Florida, to be a speaker as part of a new initiative to reach High School students. The objective was to educate young people about the electoral process, register them to vote and encourage civic engagement.
After successfully launching the program, Marcus continued her relationship with the elections office while still going to school, by conducting voter registration drives at USF.
Shortly thereafter, Marcus launched into a career of public service by working as a Senior Executive Secretary with the Florida House of Representatives.
In 2002, Supervisor Deborah Clark was two years into her first term. A pioneer in elections, Clark knew she needed a forward-thinking, creative, entrepreneurial leader to develop and manage a new Voter Outreach Department. Marcus was the obvious choice for the job due to her prior experience with the office and her vision for how to reach all voters in Pinellas County in innovative ways.
The same year, elections administrators faced the enormous task of conducting a Gubernatorial elections and educating voters on a new touch-screen voting system. Marcus was up to the challenge and coordinated 1,100 events to teach voters how to use the new technology.
Simultaneously, Marcus’ creative wheels were grinding their way toward a new initiative which would earn major national accolades for the Pinellas County Supervisor of Election’s Office. The “Vote in Honor of a Vet” program was born and received the “Superior Award” from the National Association of County Information Officers.
In 2005, Marcus was promoted to the Election Services Coordinator position, which is largely responsible for polling place operations. The job includes managing a staff of permanent employees who hire and train poll workers, and contract with polling places.
In 2007, Marcus was selected to serve on the Citizens Advisory Committee that was tasked with making a recommendation to the Pinellas Board of County Commissioners on an optical scan voting system. Tight deadlines created challenges in selecting the multimillion dollar system which had to be procured and implemented prior to the 2008 Primary. To best meet the needs of voters, numerous constituencies were considered, including voters with disabilities. The voting system recommended by the committee is still in use today.
Marcus’s success in leading large organizations through complex situations made her the perfect candidate when there was a vacancy for the Deputy Supervisor of Elections position. In 2007, Marcus’s portfolio of responsibility expanded to include Voter Outreach, Poll Worker, and the Communications and Candidate Qualifying Departments.
In May of 2012, Clark appointed Marcus as the Chief Deputy. It was clear to Supervisor Clark no one had more experience in dealing with complex matters of helping to run a Supervisor of Election’s Office than Marcus. Marcus assumed the position which she had spent a decade preparing for; one that oversaw all of her previous responsibilities and added in new ones that include preparing Canvassing Board meetings, managing personnel, a multimillion dollar budget and ensuring laws were followed across the entire organization.
As new challenges emerge, Marcus continues to rise to the occasion. Since the 2016 election cycle, Cybersecurity has been on the forefront of everyone’s mind. Marcus has spearheaded rapid changes in this domain from an organizational-wide perspective that considers a cybersecurity framework including technological, physical and human elements.
Over her 17-year career with the Supervisor of Elections, Marcus has administered 300 municipal elections, 21 countywide elections, conducted 13 machine recounts, 12 manual recounts, 35 post-election manual audits and implemented two new voting systems.
Marcus graduated from the University of South Florida where she was President of the National Political Honor Society.