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Governor honors Ben Ritter with Governor’s Medal of Merit

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

At Wednesday’s Florida Cabinet meeting, Gov. Rick Scott recognized Hillsborough County’s Ben Ritter with the Governor’s Medal of Merit.

“I want to thank Ben for his service in the United States Marine Corps and commitment to advocating for veterans and citizens with disabilities,” Scott said. “Ben’s dedication to improving the lives of those with disabilities is humbling. I’m honored to present him with the Medal of Merit today for his service and positive impact on the lives of countless Floridians.”

Ritter, who lost the use of his legs during an unsuccessful back operation, has been working in Tampa representing veterans with disabilities for the past couple of decades.

He currently serves on the Hillsborough County Veterans Council, is co-chairman of the Tampa Mayor’s Alliance for Persons with Disabilities and a member of the local Military Officers Association of America chapter and Hillsborough County Alliance for Citizens with Disabilities.

During the past few years, he’s also been a fierce advocate at Hillsborough PTC meetings, expressing concerns that ride-sharing companies don’t have wheelchair-accessible vehicles in the area.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at

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