Endorsed Candidates 2016-2017
Endorsements Update- All 3 candidates WON!
The Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County Endorsements
Gulfport, Safety Harbor and Treasure Island
March 14th 2017 Municipal Elections
St. Petersburg, FL – The membership of the Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County have voted to endorse a slate of candidates for three local Municipal races. All candidates completed written surveys on equality issues and were interviewed at length by the organization’s Elections committee. Organization members and the public are strongly encouraged to support these candidates and assist in their campaigns.
GULFPORT – City Council – Ward 4
Candidate: Michael Fridovich
Background: Michael is the type of small town politician that is everywhere. He has served Gulfport well during his time in office and he has numerous endorsements to prove it. He has also supported all LGBT and human rights issues in his role as a Gulfport Council member and in other capacities. In the past and currently Michael has been active in numerous organizations including the ACLU, Neighborhood associations and numerous boards and councils. Michael is also an associate member of the Stonewall Democrats.
SAFETY HARBOR – Mayor
Candidate: Joe Ayoub
Background: Joe impressed committee members as the candidate with the best skills and leadership qualities for the position. He is a CPA and the CFO of a growing technology company. In addition to strong LGBT support for his campaign, he also has endorsements from some Equality Leaders previously endorsed by the Stonewall Democrats and allies. Members were impressed with Joe’s work to find a smart middle ground for the city between preserving the small town atmosphere and reviving a struggling small town business district. This is a challenging and controversial matter, but the committee is recommending Joe as the best candidate for mayor.
TREASURE ISLAND – City Commission – District 4
Candidate: Deborah Lynn Toth
Background: Deborah is running her first political campaign primarily in response to her belief that the city commission was tone deaf as to the public’s desires concerning redevelopment. She intends to bring a different perspective to the commission. The answer is not always increasing building height and density. As a nurse Deborah sees equality the same way she treats all of her patients – equally. Deborah recalled times when she had to bend the rules in order to communicate with same sex partners. She has expressed strong support of all of our equality issues. We enjoyed meeting her and providing a little more LGBT education.
St. Petersburg, FL – The membership of the Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County have voted to endorse a slate of candidates for federal, state and local races. All local candidates have completed written surveys on equality issues and were interviewed at length by the organization’s Elections committee. Organization members and the public are strongly encouraged to support these candidates and assist in their campaigns.
The Stonewall Democrats’ endorsement is sought by candidates because of the strong involvement of Stonewall members in local campaign efforts. The endorsement slate is widely disseminated to voters and political groups who support equality initiatives and seek guidance on how to cast their votes.
Prior Endorsements were:
November 8 2016, general election
President and Vice President of the United States of America:
Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine
Senate of the United States
United States House of Representatives District 13 :
State of Florida
State Senate District 19: Darryl Rouson
State House District 66: Lorena Grizzle
State House District 68: Ben Diamond
State House District 69: Jennifer Webb
State House District 70, Wengay Newton
Pinellas School Board District 1: Dual Endorsements for Joanne Lentino and Matt Stewart
County School Board Referendum Questions: YES
State of Florida Amendments
Number 1: NO Number 2: YES Number 3: YES Number 5: YES
Pinellas County Commission
Mayor of Dunedin: Julie Ward Bujalski
Largo City Com Seat 3 : Neil McMullen
Pinellas County Charter Amendments
#1 NO #2YES #3 NO #4 NO #5 NO #6 YES
US Court of Appeals YES to retain all
Florida Supreme Court YES to retain all
STONEWALL DEMOCRATS OF PINELLAS COUNTY
GULFPORT WARD 1 ENDORSEMENT
The Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County remind all those Gulfport voters currently receiving their ballots in the mail to vote for our member, April Thanos for Ward 1, Gulfport City Council. In April’s own words, she wants “to serve Gulfport and make sure my ward has a representative that shares Gulfport’s inclusive values and will do what’s best for everyone in the city, not just certain neighborhoods or interest groups.”
In considering whether to endorse her, the Stonewall membership was pleased to learn of April’s background in working with small businesses and the LGBT community, promoting diversity and inclusion in the marketplace, and eliminating employment discrimination. April served as President of Seattle NOW, advocating for reproductive rights and true equality for women. In addition, April worked to raise scholarship funds to make it possible for LGBT teens to attend college, even if they didn’t have support from their families. Of course, many Stonewall members have had the opportunity to get to know April on a personal basis, because she often attends our meetings and has participated in our discussions.
Approximately 60% of Gulfport voters return mail ballots. That means Election Day is TODAY for many residents of the City. The Stonewall Democrats urge Gulfport voters to mark those ballots for April Thanos and return them now, for the sake of a more inclusive City Council.
STONEWALL DEMOCRATS OF PINELLAS CONTINUES ITS SUPPORT
FOR SAM HENDERSON FOR GULPORT MAYOR
The Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County have voted to continue their support for Sam Henderson as Mayor of Gulfport. Henderson has advocated for LGBT rights throughout his time as an elected official, beginning with his first campaign for City Council in 2009. When Henderson first sought and received the group’s endorsement, many politicians were reluctant to associate themselves with the LGBT community. Thankfully, Gulfport is one of a few local municipalities in which the importance of upholding LGBT rights is an established principle.
The Stonewall Democrats urge Gulfport residents who recently received their vote by mail ballots to mark them for Henderson and return them right away. Too many times, good citizens who intend to make their voices heard let their mail ballots disappear under the pile of newly received mail. It is important that each voter take a stand in this significant election.
The Stonewall Democrats believe that Henderson deserves another term in order to bring several ongoing projects to competition, including improvements in both storm water and waste water systems. While Henderson’s early political opponents ridiculed him for being an environmentalist, recent circumstances have made his education and knowledge in that field crucial to his public service. The Stonewall Democrats understand that this is a challenging time for the City of Gulfport, and we believe that Henderson’s desire to work cooperatively with the City of St Petersburg on matters of storm water and waste disposal will yield results that are most beneficial to the future of Gulfport.
Sam Henderson has been not only a dedicated ally to the LGBT community, but an equally reliable advocate for progressive, citizen orientated issues in Gulfport for seven years. The Stonewall Democrats believe he will continue to govern in that fashion when he is reelected Mayor of Gulfport.