News Release Header
For Immediate Release:
October 28, 2013
Media Contact:
Laura Phillips

Miami-Dade Community Image Advisory Board Hires New Manager

The Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department joins Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez and Miami-Dade County District 9 Commissioner Dennis C. Moss in announcing the appointment of Patrice Gillespie Smith as the new community image manager of the Community Image Advisory Board (CIAB).  

“I am focused on creating economic opportunities for Miami-Dade County, and it has been proven that beautiful communities that are inviting, attract businesses and their workforces to live and work in them,” Mayor Gimenez said.  “Ms. Gillespie Smith brings the experience and enthusiasm the CIAB needs to move this agenda forward in our business community, and we are fortunate to have her on board.”

“Through strategic partnerships the CIAB has been cleaning and greening Miami Dade’s public rights-of-way for more than 10 years,” said CIAB Chairman, Commissioner Dennis Moss, District 9. “With Patrice’s background and passion for creating inviting environments, I know we can grow our influence and generate more opportunities to create beautiful gateways into our community and enhance the quality of life for our Miami-Dade County residents, visitors and employees.” 

Commissioner Moss has chaired the CIAB, which is housed within the Miami-Dade Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department, since its inception in 2002.  The CIAB is the only multi-jurisdictional group dedicated to creating welcoming community gateways and beautiful connections through the maintenance and improvement of major roadways, transportation terminals and adjacent properties.  Working with Board members, including the Florida Department of Transportation, the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority, the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau, and numerous Miami-Dade municipalities, Commissioner Moss has launched countless beautification efforts, including: litter reduction education programs, the Million Trees Miami campaign, the “Revamp the Ramp” initiative, and landscape replacements and enhancements at Miami-Dade County Metrorail stations. 

Gillespie Smith has nearly 18 years of experience working in the public and private sectors executing policies and plans to create livable communities. Previously, she served as the chief of staff for the Seattle Department of Transportation, where she implemented an aggressive multi-modal agenda, created walkable environments and worked with regional agencies to create welcoming, seamless connections into and throughout the City of Seattle.   

“I am honored to join this effective collaborative of professionals, organizations and agencies that are committed to cultivating a thriving, vibrant environment that reflects a world class image of Miami-Dade County,” said Gillespie Smith.  “Together, I know we can translate our residents’ pride into real, beautiful investments in the public realm.” Gillespie Smith also served as the community relations director for the Partnership for Downtown St. Louis, a Community Improvement District charged with attracting investment in downtown St. Louis.  Most recently, Gillespie Smith served as director of transportation planning for Urban Health Partnerships (UHP), where she managed the Broward Complete Streets Initiative, Bike Walk Broward, Friends of the M-Path and the Safe Routes to Age in Place initiative for Little Havana.   She is a proud co-founder of the Bike Walk Miami Shores initiative. 

Gillespie Smith completed her bachelor’s degree at Marquette University and holds graduate degrees in planning and public administration from the Ohio State University. She lives with her family in Miami Shores. 

About the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department:

Nationally accredited, a three-time winner of the NRPA National Gold Medal Award, winner of the 2013 Florida Governor’s Sustained Excellence Award and the 2009 Florida Governor’s Sterling Award for excellence in management and operations, Miami-Dade County Parks is the third largest county park system in the United States, consisting of 260 parks and 12,825 acres of land.  It is one of the most unique park and recreation systems in the world.  Made up of more than just playgrounds and athletic fields, it also comprises out-of-school, sports-development, and summer-camp programs; programs for seniors and people with disabilities; educational nature centers and nature preserves; environmental restoration efforts; arts and culture programs and events; the renowned Zoo Miami and the Deering Estate at Cutler; the Crandon Tennis Center, home of the Sony Open; golf courses; beaches; marinas; campgrounds; pools; and more.  For information about Miami-Dade County Parks call 3-1-1, or visit

Miami-Dade County Parks is supported by The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade a non-profit 501(c)3 organization supporting the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department’s efforts to further develop Miami-Dade County’s world-class parks system for residents and visitors.  Its mission is to create a healthier, more livable and sustainable Miami community by ensuring the implementation of the Parks Open Space Master Plan and the development of year-round park and recreation programs for local children, adults and people with disabilities.  For more information on the Parks Foundation, please visit

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