Okaloosa County Tax Collector Ben Anderson receives state award for excellence

Special to The Log
From left, Tony Forcier, finance administrator; Jennifer Leach, finance administrator; Keri Holguin, chief financial officer; Ben Anderson, tax collector; and Paula Owens, finance administrator.

Ben Anderson, tax collector in and for the Okaloosa County political subdivision, has earned a special designation for excellence in the field of financial operations. A judging panel performed a detailed review of the Tax Collector’s financial records, practices and use of technology in considering Anderson for the honor.

“The Legacy Award is one of the highest achievements the Florida Tax Collector’s Association can award a local Tax Collector,” said Florida Tax Collectors, Inc. (“FTCA”) Past-President Lisa Cullen of Brevard County. “The judging process was arduous and included a detailed review of the financial functions of the Tax Collector’s Office. I am very proud to say that Mr. Anderson has earned the designation. He represents the very top echelon of elected officials.”

Last year, Anderson earned the Excellence in Financial Operations Award after demonstrating proficiency in four areas of expertise: Innovation & Automation; a Perfect Annual Audit Report; Customer Focus; and Budgeting. For the 2015 Legacy Award, Anderson demonstrated that the Office had further enhanced its financial operations.

A five person judging panel made up of government financial executives from throughout Florida reviewed the Tax Collector’s processes as related to the four areas of competency.

“The citizens of Okaloosa County can be very proud of Honorable Anderson for the award-winning manner in which he operates the Tax Collector’s Office,” Eric Zwayer, president of FTCA, said. “The panelists’ review of his office went far and above reviewing his perfect audit report. The review included methods utilized by Mr. Anderson to deliver service to the people he serves and consideration of the technological innovations he has developed and put into place.”

Tax Collectors carry out State of Florida work at the local level on behalf of Florida’s citizens including property tax collections and enforcement; driver licenses and motor vehicle services; hunting and fishing licenses; birth certificates, and so much more.