Jake Godbold

Jake Maurice Godbold (March 14, 1933 – January 23, 2020)[1] was an American politician who served as mayor of Jacksonville, Florida from 1978 to 1987.[2]

Jake Godbold
Mayor of Jacksonville
In office
1978 – July 1, 1987
Preceded byHans Tanzler
Succeeded byTommy Hazouri
Personal details
Born(1933-03-14)March 14, 1933
Jacksonville, Florida, U.S.
DiedJanuary 23, 2020(2020-01-23) (aged 86)
Jacksonville, Florida, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
The fireboat Jake M. Godbold moored on the St Johns River in Jacksonville.

Godbold was elected to the Jacksonville city council in 1967 and served until 1979; he was city council president from 1971 to 1978. When mayor Hans Tanzler announced he would be resigning his position to run for governor of Florida in 1978, Godbold was appointed to take his place for the last six months of the term. He was elected in 1979 and re-elected in 1983. During his time as mayor Godbold initiated a number of "brick and mortar" projects to revitalize the city's failing downtown. He initiated the efforts to secure an NFL team, started the Jacksonville Jazz Festival, initiated the construction of the Jacksonville Landing and the Southbank Riverwalk, and secured funds for public housing that had been taken away by the federal government. His "creative" use of bond financing meant eight years of capital construction projects by the city.

He ran for mayor again in 1995 and ultimately lost to John Delaney, the city's first Republican mayor since 1888. After leaving politics, he became involved with local charities, including Hubbard House.[3]

Godbold died on January 23, 2020. And is buried at Evergreen Cemetery.[4]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "Jacksonville porn-free". Deseret News. 17–18 December 1980. p. A19. Retrieved 26 February 2011.
  3. ^ "Victim of domestic violence praises Hubbard House | Jax Daily Record". Financial News & Daily Record - Jacksonville, Florida. 2008-10-13. Retrieved 2020-01-23.
  4. ^ Wills, Tom (2020-01-23). "Former Jacksonville Mayor Jake Godbold dies at 86". WJXT. Retrieved 2020-01-23.
Political offices
Preceded by
Hans Tanzler
Mayor of Jacksonville
Succeeded by
Tommy Hazouri