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Abel Harding

Abel Harding is a 7th generation Floridian with a deep love for the Sunshine State, its history and its people. Raised in rural North Central Florida, he moved to Jacksonville in the mid-1990's. A long-time banker, he serves as the Jacksonville market president for a regional bank.

In addition to his two-decade banking career, Harding has a life-long affinity for writing. He began with essays and letters to the editor in high school and later founded JaxPoliticsOnline, a blog focused on politics in Northeast Florida. The blog broke numerous stories and was named “best local politics blog” by Folio Weekly. Harding left banking to join the  Florida Times-Union full-time as the paper's business and politics columnist.

While with the Times-Union, Harding began the widely-acclaimed "Florida Morning" blog that was the first-of-its-kind daily digest of Florida politics. He received numerous awards during his journalism career, including Sunshine State Awards from the Society for Professional Journalists for "Broken Trust" and "Secret Agent." During his tenure with the Times-Union, Harding served as a political commentator for First Coast News, the Jacksonville affiliates of ABC and NBC, and WJCT, the local NPR affiliate.

Following his career in journalism, Harding served as the director of communications for the City of Jacksonville and as a special advisor to the mayor.

After leaving city government, Harding re-joined the banking industry in the fall of 2011. He has served in leadership capacities for a number of local nonprofit organizations and government agencies, including the Jacksonville Planning Commission, the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville, One Spark, JAX Chamber, and Operation New Hope. He currently serves on the board of the Jacksonville Humane Society and serves as chairman of JAX BIZ, the political action committee of JAX Chamber.

Harding's first novel, Beulah Land, was completed in 2020. He is currently hard at work on his second novel.


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