Okaloosa County 2020 Primary E-Voter

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State Representative, District 4

Sandra L. Atkinson

Campaign website: https://www.vote4sandra.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sandra.atkinson.733

Jeff Hinkle

Campaign website: https://jeffforflorida.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JeffForFlorida/

Patt Maney (https://www.pattmaneyforhouse.com)

1. What do you see as the top issues affecting Florida and Okaloosa County in the next four years? As to Okaloosa County, I believe the top issues are protecting and enhancing the military mission of the Eglin Complex; educating Okaloosa students and mid-career adults for 21st Century workforce jobs to build a foundation for prosperity; improving state infrastructure while protecting the environment; public safety and mental health resources while keeping taxes low. As to the State, there is a constant challenge of setting and funding priorities in a transparent and accountable way given the extraordinary growth experienced throughout the state. The 2021 session will be faced with the responsibility of reapportionment of legislative and congressional districts. Sufficient affordable housing and protection of water resources and options will be critical to sustainable growth as will infrastructure.
2. Why do you want to serve as our State Representative, and why are you the best choice? I want to serve because I believe my education, experience and record of service and accomplishments give me a unique opportunity to provide leadership and representation in Tallahassee. I served as Okaloosa County Court Judge for almost 29-years hearing disputes, determining facts and making decisions. I served in the Army Reserve for almost 37-years, deployed multiple times, was wounded and retired as a brigadier general. I have experience as a successful leader. I have served the community in many ways including helping veterans and their families, helping justice involved citizens with mental illness, recruiting a VA facility bringing federal employees to Okaloosa County and preserving Okaloosa County history. For the past 45-years, I have developed deep ties and a record of service throughout the community. My situation gives me a unique freedom to do what I think is right without worrying about possible political implications 10 and 20-years in the future. My ambition is to serve and lead now.
3. If elected/re-elected, what is your top priority for your term? My top priority is to work hard, be accessible and to successfully represent the interests of the people of Okaloosa County, House District 4. I want to be a leader who solves problems. I have a record of doing so.
4. What are your qualifications for office? I have a broad experience base ranging from small business to law, from education to military service. I serve on the Southern Regional Education Board, the Mid-Bay Bridge Authority, the Transportation Planning Organization, on a Florida Supreme Court Steering Committee, and as Civilian Aide to Secretary of the Army. I previously served on a VA Advisory Board and the Florida Defense Support Task Force. In a time of contentious and divisive elections, my record of multi-year service heading the Okaloosa County Canvassing Board to ensure fair and accurate elections is unmatched. I work hard, am accessible and have a record of proven integrity.

Jonathan Michael Tallman

Campaign website: https://votetallman.com/

County Commissioner, District 1

Wayne Harris

No information available.

Paul Mixon

Campaign website: https://www.votepaulmixon.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/votepaulmixon/

James Walker

No information available.

County Commissioner, District 3

Nathan Boyles

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Community/Nathan-Boyles-Okaloosa-County-Commissioner-District-3-196998597037725/

Brad Robert Roehrig

Campaign website: http://www.BradCCD3.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BradCCD3

County Commissioner, District 5

Dewy "Parker" Destin

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Community/Parker-Destin-for-Okaloosa-County-Commissioner-District-5-1651376218448809/

Richard Scott Johnson

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DistrictFiveOkaloosaCounty/

Mel Ponder

Campaign website: https://melforokaloosa.com/

School Board, District 2

Sherri Edwards Cox

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Political-Candidate/Sherri-Cox-for-Okaloosa-County-School-Board-District-2-104920994514956/

Martha Gardner

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Marti.Gardner.School.Board.District.2/?ref=py_c

Superintendent of Schools

Marcus Chambers

Campaign website: https://votechambers.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chambers4superintendent/

Ray Sansom (https://voteraysansom.com/)

1. What do you see as the top issues affecting the Okaloosa County School District in the next four years? As the leader, I will create a culture in which the mindset of every employee in the district is that their job, either directly or indirectly, supports teachers, thereby, supports the education of our students. The focus would be on the interaction/relationship between the teachers and the students and then radiate out from there.
2. Why do you want to serve as our School Superintendent, and why are you the best choice? The vast majority of teachers chose a career in education because they wanted to inspire and pour into young people. They arrive on the job educated and certified, with a plethora of talents, ideas and a strong work ethic. I aim to create a culture that puts a stop to micromanaging the learning process/methods. I would eliminate the constant barrage of the latest trends, sold at seminars which are attended by non-instructional, district-level personnel. I would encourage the exchange of new ideas to be naturally occurring and teacher driven. I will guide the district and school personnel to set our seasoned teachers free to use their knowledge and talents to create their own unique learning environment in order to teach the state standards. This will promote the inter-collegial sharing of ideas and methods to less experienced teachers. Teachers will tell us that no two groups of students are the same. Our teachers deserve the respect and freedom to tailor their methods to each group. Teachers deserve our confidence in their ability to tweak and refresh as they see fit.
3. If elected/re-elected, what is your top priority for your term? My top priority for my term as Superintendent will be to build back the trust of the community for our school district. The core reason that I am running for Superintendent is that my leadership approach is vastly different than that of my opponent. The experience of leading should be difficult and challenging because leaders should move toward the difficult issues, not away. Discipline must be addressed in the Okaloosa County School District. Too many instructional minutes are being lost to classroom disruptions. Yes, solid classroom management is expected, however, the lingering issues that interrupt the flow of learning are acting as a chain on our teachers. I am aware that teachers spend many hours planning purposeful, engaging lessons, only to be derailed, many times by the same small group. I will give teachers relief. They cannot simultaneously teach the required state standards, communicate with all of the stakeholders, do the essential recordkeeping, manage their classrooms AND take care of most of the discipline. Also, I will ensure that teachers feel supported with safety procedures. I will invest in smaller classes for struggling students and/or assistance in those classes. In my opinion, we simply cannot continue to tell teachers that we cannot afford essential educational programs and personnel. These are vital elements that will directly improve the learning process.
4. What are your qualifications for office? My greatest strength is the experience that I bring to the table. My experience as an Okaloosa County Commissioner gives me insight into the importance of transparency between the board members and the Superintendent. This gave me many opportunities to lead through good times as well as turbulent times, all while communicating directly to the public without using a spokesperson. I believe that the voters deserve to hear directly from the person they placed in office. As a member of the Florida House of Representatives, I filed legislation to change the unfair education funding formula which placed Okaloosa schools at the bottom of the state in per student funding. Because of my legislative experience, I know how to fight for Okaloosa Schools in the Florida Legislature. While in the legislature, I was also serving as Director of Community Affairs and Executive Director of the Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation. Under my leadership for six years, 2,900 mentors were recruited and trained, 4,000 students across every school benefited from 60,000 hours of mentoring and service and more than a million dollars were raised for scholarships for disadvantaged and deserving students.