Family: Married 20 years; son, 14, attends Duval County Public Schools.
Occupation: Real-estate investment
Education: Virginia Commonwealth University, BS, Business
Political Experience: City of Jacksonville Waterways Commission, 2010 to present, Commissioner; Chair Maritime Master Plan Steering Committee, Chair Shellfish Subcommittee, Chair Artificial Reef Subcommittee; Ex-Officio Member - City of Jacksonville Downtown Development Review Board; City of Jacksonville Ethics Commission, 2009-2010, Commissioner, Member Legislative Affairs Subcommittee, By-laws Subcommittee; Election Reform Study Group, Inc. 2007-2009, Founder, Chairman; Recent political campaigns working as paid consultant: Campaign manager, Richard Clark for Jacksonville City Council; Traffic management, Michael Corrigan for Tax Collector; Targeting Strategies, Fred "Fel"� Lee for Duval County School Board.
What do you see as the top three issues in the race?
- Teacher recruitment and retention -- " Find and focus on the key issues causing negative morale and work to solve those problems within the system. Make Duval County among the most sought after teaching positions in the US. With all the benefits of living in Florida, we have advantages others don't.
- Poverty/home environment -- "Clearly the most predictive measure of student test scores is related to socio-economic origin of the student. This is a huge challenge that few want to own. We need to look at new methods of providing guidance and assistance to children who come to us from lower socio-economic areas. The mentoring programs are a good start but we need to do more. Plus, the state needs to pony-up more money and resources for municipalities, like Duval that contain these more challenged groups. Title I is only a partial solution. "Success has 1,000 fathers and failure is an orphan." The economics surrounding the benefits of aggressive reform are clear and apparent political will is lacking.
- Expansion of centralized decision making and local disempowerment. This is a growing problem for all municipal bodies throughout the state where state entities, while generally well-intentioned, are making broad policy decisions that may benefit small groups or a specific geography of the state while disenfranchising home-rule and detracting from overall effectiveness. I believe empowerment is the key to motivation and innovation. We need to reverse this trend through legislative action.