Lauren Poe: Leadership for the long view

Published: Tuesday, January 22, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 21, 2008 at 4:43 p.m.

On January 29, the city of Gainesville will hold an election for City Commission District 2 that will shape our city's future. I am Lauren Poe and I would appreciate your vote.

Gainesville is a community of unlimited potential. We must elect leadership that will guide our city in a direction that allows us to unlock that potential. We need leadership that will take the long view, that is capable of addressing complex issues with reason and that is able to build consensus with all community stakeholders. I will provide that leadership.

I am a home-grown Gator raised in Gainesville. I was educated at Westwood Middle and Gainesville High School and earned my BA in history and masters in education from the University of Florida. Over the past decade, I have furthered my commitment to our community as an American history teacher at Ft. Clarke Middle and now as an economics and government teacher to dual-enrolled students at SFCC.

As a homeowner, an active participant in civic groups and advisory boards and as someone about to start a family of my own with my bride-to-be Emily, I have been and will continue to be committed to our community.

High on my list of priorities is promoting economic development in our city's core. We must foster the right economic climate that will allow clean emerging industries to establish roots in Gainesville. We have an excellent opportunity to attract high-tech, bio-tech and clean energy businesses that will help us diversify our economy and will create a significant number of well-paying jobs. These types of industries want to be near UF and downtown and are attracted by Gainesville's high quality of life and diverse community.

I will also protect the quality of life we all enjoy so much. We need to ensure that we support the community policing efforts of our law enforcement officers and give our fire-rescue providers the resources they need. We need to listen to and support our neighborhood organizations and make sure that code violators are dealt with quickly and effectively.

We need to ensure that we offer quality recreation opportunities for all of our city's children and that we keep our air and water clean and safe.

I will also work to make your government more effective and efficient. We must be responsive to the needs of our citizens and hold both our elected officials and city staff accountable to Gainesville's residents.

I believe that it is also time to revisit the idea of combining some city-county services. This would create a less-costly, more efficient government that would be better able to meet the needs of our community.

Finally, it is vital that we forge better relationships with the county, school board and surrounding municipalities and start working together for our common good.

For the past 25 years I have called Gainesville home. I would now like the opportunity as your commissioner to give back. I humbly ask you to vote for Lauren Poe for City Commission on January 29.

Lauren Poe is a candidate for the District 2 Gainesville City Commission seat.

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