By: Jen Russon
In 2012, when Dan Daley was elected to the Coral Springs city commission at the age of 22, he was not only the youngest person elected in the city – he was the youngest elected official in Florida.
After running unopposed for Seat 2 in 2014, Daley has continued to serve his constituents for the past six years, even while attending law school, graduating, then taking and passing the bar exam.
Daley is being challenged by political newcomer Diane Gonzalez Simpson, and on November 6, up to 80,000 registered voters in Coral Springs will decide between the two candidates.
Daley said he hopes to finish what he started in his hometown.
“When I first ran, I committed to focus on economic development, public safety, and cleaning up the look and the feel of the city. We have made great strides as a community, but there’s still work to be done,” said Daley.
He added that downtown Coral Springs is finally becoming a reality, and that he has been intimately involved in helping to make that happen.
Daley has been a resident since 2001, attended local public schools, and graduated from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. A cum laude graduate of Florida State University, Daley was a legislative aide to former State Representative, Ari Porth. His focus at that time was on issues facing the homeless community, as well as targeting government waste and corruption.
Daley holds a law degree from Nova Southeastern University and currently works as a land use attorney for Shutts & Bowen, LLP.
Daley makes his home in the Country Club of Coral Springs and said that if he is re-elected, he will continue his tradition of assisting his fellow residents with problems both big and small. He said he is committed to weighing all information and making decisions based on the long-term best interest of this city.
“I’ve worked hard to be the most accessible member of the commission when it comes to outreach and constituent concerns. I’ve been able to assist residents on issues as small as a pothole and as large as business relocation,” said Daley.
Daley serves as the commission liaison to the Economic Development Advisory Committee, the Customer Involved Government Committee, the Martin Luther King Jr. Committee, the Coral Springs Charter School Advisory Board, and the Neighborhood and Environmental Committee.
To learn more about his Daley, go to electdandaley.com.
Diane Gonzalez Simpson
For the past thirty years, Diane Gonzalez Simpson, a certified public accountant and small business owner, has lived in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Coral Springs with her family.
Simpson, who describes herself as “100 percent Puerto Rican” or “New Yor-Rican”, moved to Florida from New York, and purchased her first and current home when she was 24. A part-time real estate investor, she manages rental properties in Ft. Lauderdale and Margate, and said that her financial acumen, broad knowledge of code enforcement and fines, makes her a formidable opponent.
“My husband Ron and I have been empty-nesters for five years now. Our daughters, Mary and Sarah attended local schools before graduating from the University of South Florida. Since the shock of the shooting in Parkland, I have said, I can do more. I am willing to help. If elected, I will serve.”
Although the city commission has no oversight in gun stores regulation, Simpson has met with the Broward Teachers Union to discuss the ubiquity of weapon stores and gun sales in the county. Her top concerns as Seat 2 commissioner are balancing the city budget, reigning in special elections overspending and helping with code enforcement.
“One of the weaknesses that I hear the most about is the punitive nature of code enforcement,” said Simpson. “People are quite clear that they love the way the city looks. However, the city is very quick to turn people over to the magistrate hearing.”
She added that after attending a hearing in May, she concluded that fines are too harsh. Simpson believes code enforcement must be done with understanding and heart.
Simpson has volunteered in many areas the last 30 years, including church, school and non-profit organizations. She is a past-president of the Business & Professional Women’s Club, Cypress Creek Chapter. She has given talks for the Broward League of Women Voters, and is always eager to discuss budgets and fiscal responsibility. Simpson is also an artist who loves to paint.
For more information on her campaign, go to electdianesimpson.com
Candidates at the League of Women’s Voters Forum
Elections will be held on Tuesday November 6 at precincts located throughout Coral Springs. In addition to voting for important state officials and legislation, voters will elect two city commissioners for Coral Springs.
Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.