Award Nominations

Josephine Howard Stafford Memorial Award

Josephine Howard Stafford

The Josephine Howard Stafford Memorial Award was adopted to honor a current or former City of Tampa female employee who demonstrates outstanding commitment to her position and the community.  The award is given in memory of Ms. Stafford who devoted 24 years to the City of  Tampa as an Assistant City Attorney.  She was also the first woman judge in Hillsborough County and was a pioneer for women's issues, both professionally and in the community.


Ocea Wynn


Ocea Wynn 

2024 Josephine Howard Stafford Memorial Award Recipient


Ocea Wynn, Administrator of Neighborhood and Community Affairs, embarked upon a career in public service almost 20 years ago when she joined the City of Tampa. In her previous career, she amassed extensive work experience focusing on leadership development and innovative technology in both private industry and as a Department of Defense contractor.

Ocea is an electrical engineer, who received a master’s degree in public administration (MPA) with a concentration in Environmental Management.

She keeps abreast of the advances in local government executive leadership by participating in training such as the International City and County Management Association (ICMA) emerging leader professional public management program, mid-career manager leadership development program, and the Gettysburg Leadership Program focused on enhancing personal leadership and organizational effectiveness.

Ocea earned a Certification in Public Management (CPM) from Florida State University, a nationally recognized program for training and developing local government public managers to assume executive leadership responsibilities, and the Harvard Executive Leadership Course, Implementing Public Policy.

Ocea was appointed by the mayor as the City of Tampa’s first Chief Diversity Officer. In this critical role, she ensures an equitable and inclusive environment in all local government services. Additionally, Ocea was a contributing member of the ICMA Advisory Board for Graduate Education-Diversity and Inclusion Committee, tasked with increasing diversity in public administration for academia and local government.

Ocea serves as a trustee for the City of Tampa Firefighter and Police Pension Board, the historic Tampa Theatre and Plant Museum executive boards, United Way (Suncoast), Admiral Society, and other community boards. She volunteers for the Hillsborough County Community Action Board, which provides recommendations to administer the Community Services Block Grant funds that serve low-income residents and communities.

As a runner, Ocea competes to raise funds for non-profit organizations like the Moffitt Cancer Center, the American Heart Association, and the American Lung Association Fight for Air Stair Climb. She is a certified SPIN instructor and volunteers time by teaching classes at the Al Lopez Park – Hunt Center.

Ocea is the wife of John Meddling, an Atlanta-based business owner who gives back to the community by educating on health and wellness and is the proud mother of two young adults. Her daughter is obtaining a Ph.D. from the University of Florida College of Medicine, researching Biomedical Science with a concentration in cancer biology. Her son is a local musician who recently graduated from Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, majoring in songwriting and music production.

Updated: 01/26/2024