Musician, businesswoman says she will run for mayor

Monica Leadon Cooper comes from a prominent local musical family.

Published: Monday, January 25, 2010 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 24, 2010 at 11:44 p.m.

Monica Leadon Cooper, a member of a prominent local musical family and former member of the Gainesville Development Review Board, has filed paperwork to run for mayor.

The owner of Shaklee Products, a local health and nutrition company, Leadon Cooper is one of 10 siblings in a family that is well-known on the local music scene.

She and her brother Mark Leadon are members of the county-rock Leadon Family Band. Her brother Tom Leadon played with Tom Petty in the band Mudcrutch and brother Bernie Leadon was a founding member of the Eagles.

In a press release, she pointed to her prior civic involvement, specifically forming a neighborhood group, Friends of Northeast Park, which successfully fought against the development of a retention pond in a wooded area of that Gainesville park in 2000.

She also served on the Gainesville Development Review Board from 2001 to 2008 and was chair from 2005 to 2007.

In her release, Leadon Cooper said her campaign would focus on environmental protection - including the continued push for remediation of the contaminated Cabbot-Koppers Superfund site - energy conservation and the promotion of the mass transit and bicycle/pedestrian transportation systems.

Leadon Cooper stated she wants to promote fiscal conservatism, particularly by cutting down on the use of contracted consultants and relying more on staff. Her release also stated she wants to work for solutions to the city's homeless issues "without denying anyone food or shelter" and plans to scrutinize the contract for the planned biomass plant, which the City Commission has already approved, to see if it is a "fiscally sound" energy conservation policy.

Contact Christopher Curry at 374-5088 or

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