The Polk County Historical Commission collects and preserves historical materials that relate to Polk County and Florida’s history. The commission also works to develop and establish reliable and sustainable sources of public, private and enterprise funding to ensure the continued operation of the Polk County History Center. The historical commission also serves as an advisory commission to the Board of County Commissioners and the staff of the museum, library and the historic preservation manager.
Unless otherwise announced, the Polk County Historical Commission meets on the first Thursday in January, March, May, August and October. The Historical Marker Committee meets at 2:30 p.m., followed by the full commission at 3 p.m. All meetings will be held in the County Commission Boardroom, Polk County Administration Building, 330 W. Church St., Bartow, FL 33830, unless otherwise noticed.
- Commissioner Bill Braswell, Annual Term
- Jinx Wilson Chaney, Vice Chairperson, Oct. 1, 2022 – Sept. 30, 2025
- Denise Bohde, Oct. 1, 2022 – Sept. 30, 2025
- Bea Hancock, Oct. 1, 2022 – Sept. 30, 2025
- John G. Wood Jr., Chairperson, Oct. 1, 2020 – Sept. 30, 2023
- Darla Bridges Short, Oct. 1, 2020 – Sept. 30, 2023
- Harriet R. Rust, Oct. 1, 2020 – Sept. 30, 2023
- AT-LARGE Richard A. Fifer, Oct. 1, 2021 – Sept. 30, 2024
- Tina Peak, Polk County Library Cooperative Representative, Oct. 1, 2021 – Sept. 30, 2024
- William Lloyd Harris, Historian to the Polk County Historical Commission
- Gladys Roberts, Polk County Library Cooperative Coordinator
Qualifications for Board Members/How to Apply
The Polk County Historical Commission includes nine members who are electors of Polk and who are appointed by the Board of County Commissioners.
Members serve staggered terms of three years each. Vacancies are filled by the County Commission for the unexpired term in the same manner as the original appointment. Members may be reappointed to serve one additional term.