Looking ahead to this week
Christine Hunschofsky, mayor, Parkland
Starting this week, cities around Broward County will swear in newly elected (or reelected) commissioners, council members and mayors. Regardless of whether the candidate you supported in these important local elections won or lost, those who are being sworn in are YOUR representatives. When you have a suggestion, question, or concern about how your city or town operates, reach out to your elected municipal leaders to tell them your thoughts. Our roles as citizens don’t begin or end at the ballot box. Shape the direction of your community throughout the year by proactively engaging with your elected officials.
Maria Sachs, former member, Florida Senate
Half a century ago this week, New York's Shirley Chisholm was elected the first African-American in Congress. Congresswoman Chisholm made history and many of the African-American women elected Tuesday were inspired by her leadership. Mayor Andrew Gillium ran as the first AfricanAmerican candidate for Governor of Florida from a major political party. He ran not just to make history but to make major changes in the way our people are represented. He showed us the way that even a child born in South Dade County and raised by a wise grandmother can reach the pinnacle of success. Politics in Florida will never be the same.
Dean Trantalis, mayor, Fort Lauderdale
On Veterans Day, we pay tribute to all those who have selflessly answered the call of duty sacrificing on our behalf as members of the United States Armed Forces. This year marks the 100th Anniversary of the Armistice which brought an end to World War I. Unfortunately, even as we observe this historic peace agreement, strife and conflict continue to persist around the globe. As we honor our veterans, let us redouble our efforts to bring about world peace, and by doing so, demonstrate our sincere gratitude to those who safeguard our liberty, freedom, and independence.
Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón, president, Miami Dade College
MDC’s Miami Book Fair continues through Nov. 18. I invite everyone to join us. I also salute all veterans on Veterans Day and, frankly, every day. At MDC, we have nearly 1,500 veterans in our student body, including five Purple Heart recipients. They are always among our best and brightest. We also have numerous faculty members who have served. With Veterans Day this week and Thanksgiving around the corner, let’s pause and thank our veterans whose sacrifices truly make our nation the best in the world.
Barbara Sharief, member, Broward County Commission
November is National Family Literacy Month and reading books that match ability and interests exposes children to a whole new world. Now is the perfect opportunity for families to get back into, or start, the tradition of reading as a family. Here are some ways you can promote family literacy at home: set aside time each day for reading, keep books visible around the house, make regular visits to the library, read the book version of your child’s favorite movie and organize a children’s book club with friends in the neighborhood. Visit broward.org/Library/Events/ Pages/FamilyLiteracy.aspx to learn about Broward County’s free events.
Ina Lee, owner, Travelhost Elite of Greater Fort Lauderdale
With Trump's firing of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, there is a valid concern that the integrity and independence of the Justice Department are in danger. Now, more than ever, we need the checks and balances that this country was founded on.
Eleanor Sobel, former member, State Senate
President Trump beat up on the media again at his most recent press conference. I cannot remember a president who has been as vicious in responses to questions asked at a press conference. The media have an obligation to ask tough questions. The president does not have to make his responses personal. His plan is to intimidate reporters – to not ask tough questions. The media’s job is to stay strong and to ignore his hyperbole and to get to the facts. One might say that the president acts like a bully and uses the bully pulpit to get his way.
Randall Vitale, president, Hoffman's Chocolates
Transportation investments in Broward will be getting a boost with the passing of the one penny increase in the surtax. Voters approved the measure by over 60 percent this week - well above the 50 percent needed for passing – but now the real work begins. The stakes are high for elected officials, staff, and the oversight board, to make sure this money is invested prudently and addresses the priorities that were assured during the campaign. If used as promised, this should be a game-changer for the region.