Russ Lemmon’s shocking assessment of Shawn Frost


“To my knowledge, unlike Frost, Heady never moved out of his home and left his wife and children to live above the garage in a relative’s house as a way of claiming to have met residency requirements.”  


Traditionally, newspapers have devoted their front pages to news stores, not opinion columns.  The editors of the Scripps Press Journal have taken a different approach, giving their opinion columnist, Russ Lemmon, prime front page space three times a week.  Let the reader beware!

Granted, Lemmon’s columns are accompanied by a footnote, which essential amounts to a warning to readers that his thrice-weekly “Lemmon droppings” simply reflect his opinions, meaning Lemmon’s writings may at times be totally disconnected from reality.  Despite the disclaimers tacked on to the end of Lemmon’s columns, the editors of the Press Journal bear some responsibility for publishing on their front page opinion columns which, as often as not, are grounded in little more than the writer’s imagination.

Lemmon’s column published yesterday, headlined “Frost pulls off a Heady-like shocker,” is just such a fairy tale story.

I know Brian Heady, and Shawn Frost is no Brian Heady.  For starters, Heady has run his dozen or more campaigns without accepting contributions. Certainly it has not been Heady’s style to take thousands of dollars from California-based venture capitalists. In contrast, Frost accepted more than $5,000 from out-of-state contributors in just one week.

To my knowledge, unlike Frost, Heady never moved out of his home and left his wife and children to live above the garage in a relative’s house as a way of claiming to have met residency requirements.

In his not-so-erudite analysis of how Frost defeated incumbent Karen Disney-Brombach for the District 1 School Board seat, Lemmon made no mention of the fact that the American Federation for “Some” Children and the Florida Federation for “Some” Children targeted Bromback for defeat because of her position as president of the Florida School Board Association.

Brombach’s defeat, and Frost’s victory, had little if anything to do with local issues, as Lemmon claimed. Like the power sale story, on which Lemmon continues to report from a parochial perspective, the Bromback-Frost story is one Lemmon is misreporting because he has again completely failed to see the larger picture.

Beyond ignoring the tens of thousands of dollars in outside money poured into Frost’s campaign, Lemmon has yet to report on the serious questions surrounding Frost’s residency qualifications.  In fact, even the Press Journal’s news team failed to report this story until late yesterday evening, when the filing of a formal complaint against Frost made it impossible for the newspaper to continue to ignore the issue.

Shawn Frost is no Brian Heady, and Russ Lemmon is no James Reston.


  1. I was shocked that the residency situation didn’t appear in Russ Lemmon’s article, too. The whole situation seems suspicious and I hope I’m not being unfair to Mr. Frost and his family. The move to his father’s garage apt. just seems like a loophole that allowed him to run in that district.

  2. Sadly, not too many people are going to understand the reference to James Reston. In the days of sound bites, instant messages, and Facebook, it is necessary to conduct investigations to be able to separate fiction from reality.

    According to residency guidelines published in February 2012, the Florida Division of Elections delineated a series of examples of how residency can be validated. Thus, the courts will look at the address of a candidate as only one of the criteria required to be considered as a legal resident. Examples of documents used by the court to assess “residency” include the filing for homestead exemption, address cited on driver’s license, address cited on automobile regristration, and the address used in filing tax forms.

    The State of Florida does not do any investigation of validity when the form to obtain a Florida Voter Registration Card is filed with the Supervistor of Elections. However, the threat of civil and criminal penalties for filing false information is cited on the voter application form itself.

    The State of Florida should provide the funding to do the necessary investigation of the claims made on the voter application form. It is the only means of protecting the integrity of the voting process. This is particularly important in Florida where so many people have the luxury of owning homes in more than one state. The system as it exists today makes the voting process dependent on the integrity of the citizen. As the system exists today, it is possible for one person to cast multiple votes. There is no protection from a person not voting in more than one state other than reliance on a person’s own moral compass. .

  3. I wonder if our school children study local current events. If so, wonder what their take is on these kinds of shenanigans. On the other hand, I guess the real world has little similarity to the way we pretend it to be. Yes, Mr. Heady, based on the past, would not take money from PACs and other special interest groups. He would not leave his family at the homestead to supposedly assist his father by making the garage apartment his permanent address.

  4. Frost had, for the first time in long memory, TV ads running for his school board seat. That takes money. It’s $$$$ that beat Ms. Brombach, and sadly reporting of that fact didn’t sink into most news reports.

  5. Well he won and Disney lost . I didn’t vote for him because of his commercials I voted against Disney and common Core . She sold out Our kids !

  6. Twana, I guess that’s all that matters. He won and she lost…all the other facts are irrelevant, right? And he how did Disney sell out the kids? Frost sold out his own kid by either moving away from him as he states, or lying about it. Either way, he’s dishonest, and I’m less than thrilled that he’s representing my children’s School District. What else will he lie about? It’s OK though…lying is fine, as long as you win. Right Twana?

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