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Date of Issue: March 17, 2005

New postmaster takes over
Charlie Shannon

"Our job is customer service," says the new postmaster for most of Anna Maria Island, "and I want to meet every one of our customers."

He is Charlie Shannon, new to the Island but not to the U.S. Postal Service. He comes here from Longboat Key, where he was acting postmaster from October until Jan. 12 when he was named postmaster of Bradenton Beach.

That post office's delivery territory takes in all of Bradenton Beach and Holmes Beach. The City of Anna Maria has its own post office. While Holmes Beach has a post office, it is a "contract station" and only rented boxes receive mail.

He was born in New Orleans, attended St. Petersburg College and Pasco-Hernando Community College. Joining the U.S. Navy in 1976, he served aboard the USS Saratoga as air traffic controller and returned to New Orleans upon his discharge.

He worked for the Hilton Hotels group until he decided New Orleans wasn't for him any more, and he came to Florida. He went to work for the Postal Service in St. Petersburg in 1984, serving in every job the office had for 16 years, he said.

 Then came three-plus years as delivery supervisor at Ellenton and a move for the family home to Parrish so his wife Linda could commute to her job as bulk mail supervisor with the Postal Service in Tampa. They have two daughters.

"This is going to be the best post office in the Suncoast district," he vowed. "I've challenged the staff to make it so. It's always been great, now we'll make it the greatest.

"Don't forget, I came out of the hospitality industry where I learned that the customer is king. Without customers we couldn't survive, and I want to get to know them all, especially business customers."