Committee of the Islands Elects New Board Member

provided to The Santiva Chronicle

Jeff Blackman

At its November meeting, the Committee of the Islands board of directors elected Jeff Blackman to serve as its newest member.

Blackman’s career has spanned two continents and a wide range of positions and responsibilities. After receiving bachelor’s degrees in religious studies and history from Indiana University, he went on to earn advanced degrees from The George Washington University Law School (JD) and the London School of Economics (LLM).

He practiced commercial litigation and administrative law in Washington, D.C. In Eastern Europe, he directed international development in former Czechoslovakia; directed international law projects for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees in former Czechoslovakia, former Yugoslavia, and former Soviet Union; practiced corporate acquisitions and media licensing; and co-founded an international film distribution company.

Locally, Blackman co-founded a law practice on Sanibel and a golf cart rental company in Fort Myers. He holds membership in a number of Sanibel organizations, volunteers for Community and Housing Resources, and is president-elect of the Sanibel-Captiva Kiwanis Club.

COTI’s board is comprised of officers Larry Schopp, president; Maryann Bell, vice president; Peter Walcott, secretary; and Chet Sadler, treasurer. Directors are Barbara Joy Cooley, Carol Gestwicki, Jon Gustafson, and Ed Holden.

COTI is a Florida not-for-profit corporation founded in 1975 by some of the same people who helped incorporate Sanibel as an independent, self-governing city. Its mission then and now has been to ensure the continuity of good local government, protect the environment, and preserve the sanctuary character of our barrier island community. Standing committees include City Governance, Environment, Transportation, Land Use Policy, Resiliency, and Technology. Membership is open to the public, and new members are always welcome. The organization’s website,, contains information and news, as well as the opportunity to join COTI online.

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