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Posted on: May 26, 2022

"Staff Spotlight" with Tyler Williams, intern for City of Zephyrhills

Tyler Williams, intern for City of Zephyrhills

Tyler Williams, intern for the City of Zephyrhills

What made you want to partake in the internship program with the City of Zephyrhills? 
“I’ve kind of always been interested in local government, but local government is really something I’ve taken an interest to in only really recent years; I initially wanted to work internationally. I took a local government class during the fall semester of my master’s program with Steven Spina, who everybody knows here (as the former City Manager), and that class really sealed the deal, that local government, the community aspect is where it’s at. And, Zephyrhills is really the nearest municipality to me. I live in Wesley Chapel, so Zephyrhills is just right down the road.” 

What have you enjoyed about your time interning with the City thus far? 
“How different everything is, and the variety of it all. I always had an idea that a lot goes into running a city and managing a city, and making sure that everything is working as it should, but seeing the different things that everybody does here — seeing how Public Works operates, and how that differs from Utilities; seeing Finance and Human Resources operates; really, just how different everything is. Everybody is so different and everybody has a different objective that they’re trying to achieve for the City, yet everybody still kind of relies on each other and has to constantly be engaging with one another, in order to make sure the City is achieving the objectives that it wants to.” 

Throughout this internship, what is an aspect of municipal government that you learned, that you previously didn’t know? 
“A big one was with Public Works Director Shane LeBlanc, learning about all the work that goes into managing the road signs. I had no idea about what goes into managing them. Things like, what goes into managing the road signs; wastewater treatment; planning; and, dealing with the community — just stuff that you would never think of driving down the road. Now, I have a completely different understanding of what goes into managing the City, for sure.”  

Who, or what inspires you? 
“I know this sounds cheesy, but I would say my family — my mom and dad. Originally, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go forward with a degree in public administration, but they were definitely the ones that pushed me in that direction, and encouraged me to do so. In hindsight, it was absolutely the right choice. I have them to thank big-time for where I’m at.” 

What is something people may not know about you? 
“I do have some hobbies. I’ve started to engage a lot more in physical fitness, so I will go on a jog almost every morning now. An accomplishment I’m very proud of is I’ve lost over 100 pounds; I was about 300 pounds last January, and now I’m down to 180 pounds. I also love watching movies. My favorite film is, “No Country for Old Men.” I also love World War I and World War II history. I think, just how that period changed the century is fascinating to me. My great-grandfather was stationed in the Pacific during World War II, and his ship was actually hit by Kamikaze pilots, and there’s a photo at my grandmother’s house of the ship sinking with smoke building up in the back; but he, and the surviving crew were like leaning up against the rail and posing for a photo. So, I’ve always had a natural interest, just because of that.” 

What stands out to you about the Zephyrhills community? 
“The yellow house (Tina & Joe’s Café, formerly the Jeffries House) stands out because I’ve eaten there twice and drive by there pretty much every single day; their sandwiches are delicious. I do have memories growing up around Zephyrhills, as well. When I was a kid, my mom would take us to Zephyr Park, and I actually drove my bike into the lake there, and I remember some teenagers that were standing nearby went into the lake and fished my bike out of the lake, so I have that memory forever ingrained into my head.”

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