Orange County, Florida
County of Orange
Orlando FL cnty crths01.jpg
The Orange County Courthouse in 2011
Flag of Orange County, Florida
Logo of Orange County, Florida
Map of Florida highlighting Orange County
Location in the U.S. state of Florida
Map of the United States highlighting Florida
Florida's location in the U.S.
Founded 1845
Named for Orange fruit
Seat Orlando
Largest city Orlando
 • Total 1,003 sq mi (2,598 km2)
 • Land 903 sq mi (2,339 km2)
 • Water 100 sq mi (259 km2)
Population (est.)
 • (2016) 1,314,367
 • Density 1,249.25/sq mi (482/km²)
Congressional districts 5th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Orange County is a county in the state of Florida, in the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 1,145,956,[1] making it Florida's fifth-most populous county. The county seat is Orlando.[2]

Orange County is the central county Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area.



The land that is Orange County was part of the first land to emerge from below the Early Oligocene sea 33.9–28.4 million years ago and is known as Orange Island. Orange County's Rock Spring location is a Pleistocene fossil bearing area and has yielded a vast variety of birds and mammals including giant sloth, mammoth, camel, and the dire wolf dating around 1.1 million years ago.[3]

In 1821, two counties formed Florida: Escambia to the west and St. Johns to the east. In 1824, the area to the south of St. Johns County became Mosquito County, and Enterprise was named the county seat. This massive county took up much of central Florida. Mosquito County was renamed Orange County in 1845 when Florida became a state.[4] Several counties, such as Osceola, Seminole, Lake, and Volusia were carved out of Orange County.

Orange County was renamed from Mosquito County for the fruit that constituted the county's main product. At its peak in the early 1970s, some 80,000 acres (320 km2) were planted in citrus in Orange County.[citation needed] There was the dark green foliage of orange trees and the scent of the orange blossoms when in bloom. Fewer commercial orange groves remained by the end of the twentieth century. The majority of groves were destroyed by the freezing temperatures experienced in successive winters of 1985-1986, in particular by the January 1985 cold wave, the worst since 1899.[citation needed]

The financial setbacks, not the first in the grove region's history, were too challenging for many growers. Economically destroyed, many walked away from the land and its obligations. Others awaited other opportunities. One of the region's major land owners and growers was the Tropicana company. They, however, also withdrew rather than try to come back from these seemingly endless generational decimation. With no realistic avenues for agricultural use of this rural land, and Florida's continuing strong population growth and its attendant needs (aided and supported by the success of nearby Walt Disney World and Universal Studios Florida), these areas began and continue to be swallowed up by growing housing developments. However, several packing facilities and wholesalers are still in Orange County.[citation needed]


2010 U.S. Census tract map of Orange County

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,003 square miles (2,600 km2), of which 903 square miles (2,340 km2) is land and 100 square miles (260 km2) (10.0%) is water.[5]

Adjacent countiesEdit



Census Pop.
1840 73
1850 466 538.4%
1860 987 111.8%
1870 2,195 122.4%
1880 6,618 201.5%
1890 12,584 90.1%
1900 11,374 −9.6%
1910 19,107 68.0%
1920 19,890 4.1%
1930 49,737 150.1%
1940 70,074 40.9%
1950 114,950 64.0%
1960 263,540 129.3%
1970 344,311 30.6%
1980 471,016 36.8%
1990 677,491 43.8%
2000 896,344 32.3%
2010 1,145,956 27.8%
Est. 2015 1,288,126 [6] 12.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[7]
1790-1960[8] 1900-1990[9]
1990-2000[10] 2010-2015[1]


U.S. Census Bureau 2010 Ethnic/Race Demographics:[11][12]

In 2010, 5.9% of the population considered themselves to be of only "American" ancestry (regardless of race or ethnicity.)[11]

There were 421,847 households out of which 30.81% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.50% were married couples living together, 15.65% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.18% were non-families. 24.85% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.08% (1.71% male and 4.37% female) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 3.19.[12][15]

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.6% under the age of 18, 12.8% from 18 to 24, 29.8% from 25 to 44, 24.1% from 45 to 64, and 9.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33.7 years. For every 100 females there were 97.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.9 males.[15]

The median income for a household in the county was $50,138, and the median income for a family was $57,473. Males had a median income of $40,619 versus $31,919 for females. The per capita income for the county was $25,490. About 10.0% of families and 13.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.2% of those under age 18 and 9.4% of those aged 65 or over.[16]

In 2010, 19.1% of the county's population was foreign born, with 43.8% being naturalized American citizens. Of foreign-born residents, 68.9% were born in Latin America, 17.8% born in Asia, 8.1% were born in Europe, 3.0% born in Africa, 2.0% in North America, and 0.2% were born in Oceania.[17]


As of 2010, 67.43% of all residents spoke English as their first language, while 22.59% spoke Spanish, 2.44% French Creole (mostly Haitian Creole,) 1.23% Portuguese, 0.88% Vietnamese, 0.78% Indian languages (including Gujarati and Hindi,) 0.58% Tagalog, 0.53% Chinese, 0.50% French, and 0.45% of the population spoke Arabic as their mother language.[18] In total, 32.57% of the population spoke languages other than English as their primary language.[18]


The county functions under a charter form of government. The charter serves as a constitution, detailing the structure and operation of the local government. A Charter Review Commission has the power to consider and place amendments on the ballot. Voters then decide whether to accept or reject all amendments put forth. If voters approve an amendment, it is then inserted into the charter.

Federal representationEdit

Four districts of the US House of Representatives represent parts of Orange County.

Federal representation
District Incumbent Hometown % Orange County voters[19] Next election
7 Stephanie Murphy Winter Park 24.8 2018
8 Bill Posey Rockledge 1.3 2018
9 Darren Soto Orlando 15.66 2018
10 Val Demings Orlando 58.24 2018

District 7 encompasses all of Seminole County and portions of northern Orange County

Places include: Maitland, Winter Park and parts of Orlando

District 8 encompasses all of Brevard and Indian River Counties and far eastern Orange County

District 9 encompasses all of Osceola County, eastern Polk County and south central Orange County

Places include: parts of Orlando

District 10 encompasses western Orange County

Places include: Apopka, Ocoee, Winter Garden, Windermere and parts of Orlando

State representationEdit

Orange County residents are represented in Tallahassee with 3 Senate seats.

State senators
District Incumbent Hometown % Voters[20] Next election
11 Randolph Bracy Orlando 37.44 2020
13 Linda Stewart Orlando 42.55 2020
15 Victor Torres Orlando 20 2020

District 11 encompasses northwestern Orange County

District 13 encompasses north central and northeastern Orange County

District 15 encompasses all of Osceola County and the southern third of Orange County

Orange County residents are represented in Tallahassee with 9 House seats.

State representatives
District Incumbent Hometown % Voters[21] Next election
30 Bob Cortes Altamonte Springs 4.56 2018
31 Jennifer Sullivan Mount Dora 5.08 2018
44 Eric Eisnaugle Orlando 15.22 2018
45 Kamia Brown Orlando 12.46 2018
46 Bruce Antone Orlando 10.47 2018
47 Mike Miller Orlando 15.64 2018
48 Amy Mercado Orlando 13.01 2018
49 Carlos Guillermo Smith Orlando 13.81 2018
50 Rene Plasencia Orlando 9.74 2018

District 30 encompasses southern Seminole and portions of northern Orange County

District 31 encompasses northern Lake County and northwest Orange County

District 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, and 49 are wholly composed of Orange.

District 50 encompasses northern Brevard County and eastern Orange County

County representationEdit

Orange County is served by a Board of Commissioners. The board consists of an elected mayor and six commissioners. The mayor is elected At-large, while commissioners are elected from single districts. The mayor and commissioners each serve staggered four year terms. Commissioners from Districts 1, 3, and 5 are elected in presidential election years, while the mayor and commissioners from Districts 2, 4, and 6 are elected in alternate years. The county is also served by a clerk of courts, sheriff, property appraiser, tax collector, supervisor of elections, state attorney, and public defender. All positions are four year terms, requiring direct election by voters in presidential election years.

Orange County officials
Position Incumbent Next election
Mayor Teresa Jacobs 2018
District 1 Commissioner Betsy VanderLey 2020
District 2 Commissioner Brian Nelson 2018
District 3 Commissioner Pete Clarke 2020
District 4 Commissioner Jennifer Thompson 2018
District 5 Commissioner Emily Bonilla 2020
District 6 Commissioner Victoria P Siplin 2018
Clerk of Courts Tiffany Moore Russell 2020
Sheriff Jerry Demings 2020
Comptroller Phil Diamond 2020
Property Appraiser Rick Singh 2020
Tax Collector Scott Randolph 2020
Supervisor of Elections Bill Cowles 2020
State Attorney Aramis D.Ayala 2020
Public Defender Robert Wesley 2020

Voter RegistrationEdit

Party Number of Registered voters %
Democratic Party 337,276
Independent 234,366
Republican Party 215,667
Independence Party 2,508
Libertarian Party 2,013
Green Party 474
Reform Party 47
Constitution Party 47
America's Party 18
PTY 12
Ecology Party of Florida 9



Public educationEdit

The Orange County Public Schools are responsible in delivering public education to students countywide. An elected school board composed of a chairman, elected At-large, and seven members, elected from single-member districts, oversees the functions and expenditures of the school system. Each member is elected to a staggered four-year term. Four are elected in presidential election years, while the chairman and three other members are elected in gubernatorial election years. The school system operates 182 schools (123 elementary, 3 K-8, 35 middle, 19 high, and 4 exceptional learning). In October 2012, the district had 183,562 students, making it the fourth largest school district statewide and eleventh in the nation.[23]

Orange County School Board
Position Incumbent Next election
Chairman Bill Sublette 2014
District 1 Joie Cadle 2014
District 2 Daryl Flynn 2014
District 3 Rick Roach 2014
District 4 Pam Gould 2016
District 5 Kathleen Butler-Gordon 2016
District 6 Nancy Robbinson 2016
District 7 Christine Moore 2016

Colleges and universitiesEdit

The University of Central Florida is the sole public university. A fall 2012 enrollment of 59,767, currently places it second in the nation amongst public colleges and universities for student enrollment.[24] The university's massive campus is situated in northeast Orange County.

Nearby Winter Park is home to Rollins College, a private college situated only a few miles from Downtown Orlando. In 2012, it was ranked #1 by U.S. News & World Report amongst regional universities in the South.[25]

With six campuses spread throughout the county, Valencia College offers two-year degree programs, as well three baccalaureate programs.

The law schools for Barry University and Florida A&M are also conveniently located in Downtown Orlando.

Full Sail University is a for-profit university in Winter Park, Florida. Full Sail is not regionally accredited, but is nationally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) to award associate's, bachelor's degrees, and master's degrees in audio, film, design, computer animation, business, and other fields.[10] The school offers 35 degree programs and 2 graduate certificates and has a student population of more than 16,800.


Walt Before Mickey, a feature film about Walt Disney creating Mickey Mouse, was shot locally.


Orange County is served by the Orange County Library System, which was established in 1923. Before the opening of the Albertson Public Library in 1923, a circulating library maintained by the Sorosis Club of Orlando offered book lending services to patrons on a subscription basis. The Albertson Public Library was established with the collection of Captain Charles L. Albertson and the library was named in his honor. In 1924, the Booker T. Washington Branch of the Albertson Library was established to service the African American community of Orlando. In 1966, the current Orlando Public Library building was completed on the grounds of the Albertson Public Library. [26] Currently there are 16 libraries within the Orange County Library system.[27]


Orange County vote
by party in presidential elections
Year Republican Democratic
2016 35.4% 195,216 59.8% 329,894
2012 40.4% 188,589 58.6% 273,665
2008 40.3% 186,832 59.0% 273,009
2004 49.6% 192,539 49.8% 193,354
2000 48.0% 134,531 50.1% 140,236
1996 45.9% 106,059 45.7% 105,539
1992 45.9% 108,788 34.9% 82,683
1988 67.9% 117,237 31.3% 54,023
1984 71.4% 122,068 28.5% 48,752
1980 61.1% 87,454 34.1% 48,767
1976 54.0% 70,451 44.8% 58,442
1972 79.6% 94,516 20.1% 23,840
1968 50.5% 50,874 22.4% 22,548
1964 56.1% 48,884 43.9% 38,248
1960 71.0% 48,244 29.0% 19,729

Orange County is located along the pivotal Interstate 4 corridor, the swing part of the state. Many close elections are won or lost depending on the voting outcome along the corridor. Voters are considered independent, traditionally splitting their votes, electing Democrats and Republicans on the same ballot. As a result of such independence, voters are inundated with non-stop television and radio ads months preceding a general election.

In September 2000,[29] Democrats overtook Republicans in voter registration. This was a factor in Al Gore becoming the first Democratic presidential candidate to carry the county since 1948. In the years since, Republicans have yet to retake the advantage they once enjoyed. In the twelve years that followed, Democrats experienced a modest increase in their voter registration percentage from 41.40% to 42.73% of the electorate. Minor party voters also had modest growth, increasing from 2.17% to 2.37%. In contrast, Republicans experienced a sharp decrease in registered voters, sliding from 40.95% in 2000 down to 29.85% in 2012. The beneficiary of the Republican losses have been unaffiliated voters. The percentage of the electorate identifying as an unaffiliated voter increased from 15.47% to 25.06% during this same period.

Voter registrationEdit

Voter registration and party enrollment as of April 14, 2015[30]
Party Total Percentage
Democratic 299,794 41.53%
Republican 204,852 28.38%
Minor parties 45,236 6.27%
Unaffiliated 172,039 23.83%
Total 721,921 100.00%


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 10, 2015. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ Petuch, Edward J., Roberts, Charles; The geology of the Everglades and adjacent areas, 2007, ISBN 1-4200-4558-X.
  4. ^ Publications of the Florida Historical Society. Florida Historical Society. 1908. p. 33. 
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  6. ^ "County Totals Dataset: Population, Population Change and Estimated Components of Population Change: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016. 
  7. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on May 11, 2015. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  8. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h "Orange County: SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". Retrieved October 20, 2015. 
  12. ^ a b c d "Orange County Demographic Characteristics". Retrieved October 20, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Orange County, Florida FIRST ANCESTRY REPORTED Universe: Total population - 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". Retrieved November 12, 2015. 
  14. ^ "Hispanic or Latino by Type: 2010 -- 2010 Census Summary File 1". Retrieved October 20, 2015. 
  15. ^ a b "Orange County: Age Groups and Sex: 2010 - 2010 Census Summary File 1". Retrieved October 20, 2015. 
  16. ^ "Orange County, Florida: SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS - 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". Archived from the original on November 29, 2014. Retrieved November 18, 2015. 
  17. ^ "Palm Beach County: SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". Retrieved October 19, 2015. 
  18. ^ a b "Modern Language Association Data Center Results of Orange County, Florida". Modern Language Association. Retrieved October 20, 2015. 
  19. ^ "Voter Statistic - Congressional District" (PDF). Orange County Supervisor of Elections. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-12. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  20. ^ "Voter Statistic - Florida State Senate" (PDF). Orange County Supervisor of Elections. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  21. ^ "Voter Statistic - Florida State House" (PDF). Orange County Supervisor of Elections. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  22. ^ "March, 2017 party totals" (PDF). 
  23. ^ "Pocket Guide 2012-2013" (PDF). Orange County Public Schools. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  24. ^ "University Student Profile". University of Central Florida. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2012-10-01. 
  25. ^ "Best Colleges". US News & World Report. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2012-10-01. 
  26. ^ "Library History". Orange County Library System. 2015-09-18. Retrieved 2016-11-22. 
  27. ^ "Location & Hours". Orange County Library System. 2015-09-08. Retrieved 2016-11-22. 
  28. ^
  29. ^ "Registration and Party Enrollment Statistics as of September 30, 2000" (PDF). Florida Department of State. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2000-10-30.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  30. ^ "Registration and Party Enrollment Statistics as of March 31, 2015" (PDF). Orange County Supervisor of Elections. Retrieved 2014-04-14. 

External linksEdit