Pinellas Suncoast Fire & Rescue Board of Commissioners

Lawrence G. Schear - Secretary/Treasurer
Lawrence G. Schear - Secretary/TreasurerCommissioner
Board of Fire Commissioners
Indian Shores – Seat 1

Term Ends:  11/2024

Following a long and successful career in Aerospace Engineering (Systems, Communications, Manufacturing, and management for both large and small companies), Larry and his wife Diantha retired to the Suncoast in Indian Shores near family (2 children and their families including 4 grandkids, and a sister-in-law and her family) and new friends.

Larry continues a long history of voluntary community service with some Indian Shores’ appointed boards learning first hand our local political and geographic infrastructure and issues. When an opening appeared on the PSFRD Board, his mayor suggested that he might be interested in contributing more actively there by filling the open term. He was subsequently elected in November, 2010, to the Board.

Larry’s outside activities include motorsports (Tampa Bay British Car Club and Sun Coast Jaguar Club), computers and electronics, travel, reading, our Space Program, outdoor sports, Boy Scouts, and military history and preparedness. He was instrumental in the selections of the new Fire Chief and the Indian Rocks Beach Commissioner.

David Ardman - Vice Chair
David Ardman - Vice ChairCommissioner
Board of Fire Commissioners
Indian Rocks Beach – Seat 2

Term Ends:  11/2024

David Ardman has more than 30 years of experience with project coordination, public information/presentation, and client relationship management in both the public and private sectors.

Soon after the tragic Schoharie Creek Bridge collapse on the New York State Thruway in upstate New York in April 1987, David began his public career as a Public Information Officer for the NYS Thruway Authority and was responsible for the dissemination of information for both the 559-mile superhighway system and the 325-mile state canal system.  After serving in that role, David became Manager for Traveler Information Services and worked on the roll-out of the nation’s first electronic toll collection system, known as E-ZPass.

After 11 years with the Thruway Authority, David worked in the NYS Legislature, serving as Press Secretary to the chair of the Senate Transportation Committee and worked on the campaign that led to the passage of the $3.2 billion NYS Transportation Bond Act in 2000.

Since 2001, David has represented multi-disciplined consulting engineering firms.  Currently, David is employed by McKim & Creed in their Clearwater office as a Project Coordinator/Business Development Manager.  David’s projects include the conversion of existing overhead utility lines to underground along coastal regions in Florida.  David is also a contract consultant for Waste Connections, the third largest hauling company in the United States, for their operations in New York State.

Living full-time in Florida since 2015, David has obtained certifications from FDOT (QC Manager and Advanced MOT), FEMA, FDEP (Stormwater Management Inspector) and the Florida Engineering Society.  David also serves on the Economic Development Committee for the Central Pinellas Chamber of Commerce and on the Arts & Design Committee for the Skyway Marina District in southern St. Petersburg.

David and his life partner, Lisa Stratton, live on La Hacienda Drive in Indian Rocks Beach.  Son, Jacob, graduated from the State University of New York at Oneonta in 2020.

David D. Gardella
David D. GardellaCommissioner
Board of Fire Commissioners
Belleair Beach and Belleair Shore – Seat 3

Term Ends:  11/2022

A lifelong beach area resident, David has been a real estate broker since 1982 and specializes in the marketing and selling of luxury waterfront and resort properties in the beach and mainland communities of Pinellas County. In his 30-year career, he consistently ranks among the top sales agents in his market.

After twenty years with the Coldwell Banker organization, David opened his own real estate office in 2005; and in 2010, David joined Premier Sotheby’s International Realty.

In addition to his real estate career, David also owns and operates apartment rentals in Indian Rocks Beach and Belleair Bluffs.

Joseph V. Bruni - Chair
Joseph V. Bruni - ChairCommissioner
Board of Fire Commissioners
Mainland – Seat 4

Term Ends:  11/2022

Joseph V. Bruni was elected in the general election of November, 2014, to represent an area of unincorporated Pinellas County known as the Oakhurst area. This area includes property east of the intercoastal waterway to the west side of 131st Street and bordered on the south by 94th Avenue and the north to the commercial property on Walsingham Road. He takes the position from the outgoing incumbent, James G. Mortellite, who served from 2002 to 2014.

Joe Bruni started his fire service career in the Pittsburgh, Pa. area where he served as a volunteer firefighter for six years and as a career firefighter for seven years. In 1987 he relocated to Largo, Florida,serving with the St. Pete Beach Fire Department for nine months. Commissioner Bruni in 1988 was appointed to St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue and is now the Chief of the Safety and Training Division for that department. He rose through their ranks as a firefighter and driver/engineer to the ranks of Lieutenant and Captain prior to his promotion to Division Chief in 2009. As a Division Chief, he oversees three employees assigned to the Safety and Training Division; and he is assigned as the department Health and Safety Program Manager.

Commissioner Bruni is a Florida State certified Fire Officer I, Florida certified Fire Instructor III, and Florida certified Emergency Medical Technician. He has performed as a Field Training Officer, Hazardous Materials Technician, and a member of the department Technical Rescue Team. Chief Bruni is also a member of the Pinellas County Training Officers Group. He is an adjunct instructor for St. Petersburg College Fire Academy, St. Petersburg College Fire Science Program, and Pinellas Technical Education Center. He is a member of the St. Petersburg College Fire Training Center Advisory Committee.

Commissioner Bruni graduated with honors with a degree in Fire Science Administration from St. Petersburg College, has a bachelor’s degree with distinction in Organizational Studies from Eckerd College, and obtained with honors a Masters in Education with a concentration in Public Administration from Troy State University.

Louis R. Snelling IV
Louis R. Snelling IVCommissioner
Board of Fire Commissioners
Mainland – Seat 5

Term Ends:  11/2024

Commissioner Louis R. Snelling IV was appointed to the Board of Fire Commissioners upon the retirement of James C. Terry in December of 2015, and was  elected in November 2016 for a four-year term and has been subsequently re-elected since then.

Lou grew up on Indian Rocks Beach and graduated from Seminole High School in 1966. In 1968, he entered the United States Navy and was attached to Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One, stationed in the Far East in Japan and Vietnam. In 1972, he married the former Barbara A. McMullen, of Clearwater, and the two were married until her passing in 2004. He has two sons, Lou and Ryan, as well as five grandchildren.

His 44-year fire service career as a volunteer firefighter began with the Indian Rocks Volunteer Fire Department. In 1973, he was hired by the City of Largo Fire Department as a Firefighter/EMT, and then hired as a Firefighter/Paramedic with the Indian Rocks Special Fire Control District in 1978. In 1980, he was hired by Seminole Fire Department as a Firefighter/Paramedic, where he served as a Lieutenant Paramedic, Captain, and EMS Coordinator. He was later brought on in 1996 with the Dunedin Fire Department to coordinate the set-up of EMS for the department. As Division Chief of EMS and Logistics, he served for 20 years, retiring in 2016.

Commissioner Snelling graduated from the St. Petersburg College EMS Paramedic program and maintained Florida State license and Pinellas County certified Paramedic status for 38 years. He was also a State of Florida certified Firefighter, Fire Officer, Fire Instructor, and Live Fire Trainer.

Board of Fire Commissioners Duty

Board of Fire Commissioners By-Laws