Meet Your Commissioner

District 2 - Commissioner Carolyn Ketchel

bcc_carolyn_ketchel.jpgEMAIL: CKetchel@co.okaloosa.fl.us

Commissioner Carolyn Ketchel is Chairman of the Okaloosa County Commission for FY2017. She has been a resident of Okaloosa County for over 30 years, and brings a comprehensive background in Federal, State and local experience, with an emphasis on social services policy and administration which spans decades. She was named the Social Worker of the Year for the State of Florida in 2015 by the National Association of Social Workers.

Carolyn was accepted into the prestigious Presidential Management Fellowship program after graduate school.  While in Washington, she served on the White House Conference on Families under President Carter, and the Commission to Reform Social Security under President Reagan. She was recognized for her work on Social Security by President Reagan. Carolyn worked in the United States Congress as a Subcommittee Director for the powerful Ways and Means Committee.

Carolyn holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work in Administration, Social Policy and Clinical Counseling, and has a license in Clinical Social Work. During her years as a Social Worker she has worked on the macro-level, assisting to pass legislation on Social Security, child welfare and foster care.  Carolyn’s public service in Florida includes serving on Congressman Jeff Miller’s district staff, and serving as Senator Don Gaetz’s legislative director. While working in Tallahassee, she was instrumental in passing legislation to bring a social work program to the University of West Florida. 

Carolyn’s local service includes directing Catholic Charities throughout Okaloosa and Walton Counties from 2007 to 2012. Carolyn has had a private Christian counseling practice for many years.  She is also a long time radio talk show host on WPSM, hosting a show called Christian Perspective with Carolyn Ketchel.  Carolyn was the Chairman of the St. Mary's School Board, and served on the Diocesan Commission on Catholic Schools. She received the Christus Medicus Award for her work in social programs from Bishop John Ricard. In 2013, she was appointed to the Florida Gubernatorial Faith-Based and Community-Based Advisory Council by Senate President Don Gaetz. She also serves as the Vice Regent of the Choctawhatchee Bay Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Carolyn Ketchel has distinguished herself as a leader in Northwest Florida with a reputation for integrity and conservative ideals. She has been active in Republican politics for many years, serving as campaign director for two Republican congressional campaigns, and as an Okaloosa County Republican precinct committeewoman. She was elected to the Okaloosa County Commission, without opposition, and took office in November of 2014.

Commissioner Ketchel’s community and county liaisons are as follows:
Community:  Transportation Disadvantaged Coordinating Board, Military Relations with Hurlburt Field and Eglin Air Force Base, Okaloosa Walton TPO and Okaloosa League of Cities, Ft. Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce, Okaloosa and Walton Transportation and Planning Organization.
County: Airports Department-VPS and Okallosa County Aviation Board, Public Safety Coordinating Council, Director on Gulf Consortium and Supervisor of Elections’ Canvassing Board.
Achievements: Led in the development of the Okaloosa County Aviation Board, and the formation of the Miss Ruth's Farmers Market. Spearheaded the creation of the Lazarus Field for the burial of the indigent poor. Completed certification with the Florida Association of Counties as a Certified County Commissioner.

Carolyn is a devoted wife and mother of two adult sons. She was extremely active in various school and youth activities with her sons. She served in numerous leadership functions in Boy Scouting, where both her sons achieved Eagle Scout rank. Carolyn has been married for 34 years to Circuit Judge Terry Ketchel.