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Pinellas School Board attorney takes new job

This will be the fourth time that the board's John Bowen has switched school districts.

By Times Staff Writer
Published May 4, 2005

John Bowen, the Pinellas School Board's attorney since 1995, has accepted a job with the Manatee School Board.

Bowen, 60, will earn $158,350 from a three-year deal that is more than his Pinellas salary and offers more retirement benefits.

A veteran who earned a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star in Vietnam, Bowen has worked in Florida school law since 1973. In addition to Pinellas and now Manatee, he has worked for school boards in Orange and Hendry counties and has represented the state Department of Education.

Bowen is one of the chief architects of the federal court settlement that resulted in the Pinellas school choice plan. He said Tuesday he regards the settlement as "the big highlight of my career."

Manatee is a much smaller district with 42,000 students, but Bowen said it is growing at a clip of 1,300 students a year.

He said of Pinellas: "I've got a lot of friends here and 101/2 years of great associations. I was proud to represent the school district. It's a great school district." He leaves in early July.

[Last modified May 4, 2005, 00:56:08]

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