•Florida A&M University School of Law, J.D., 2005
•University of Central Florida, B.A., Political Science, 2001
•Seminole State College, A.S., Fire Science Technology, 1994
Civic Organizations (limit 75 words)
I have been involved for many years with “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer”, which my wife organizes. I have also served as a board member for the American Cancer Society & Seminole Work Opportunity Program (a non-profit that connects disabled adults with employment opportunities).
Please describe your positions on the legislative responsibility for protecting the public interest in the Education, Health Care and Criminal Justice systems. Do you have any specific proposals to improve these systems? (limit 150 words)
I believe that it is the primary duty of government to maintain high-quality public education, infrastructure, health care and public safety systems. Ensuring adequate funding for these fundamental systems at the state level is certainly the first step to fulfilling these duties. Education is particularly essential, since investments in education result in economic benefits, improved public safety, health and well-being for the surrounding community. For these, among other reasons, I believe that public education should be better prioritized in the state budget, our teachers should be well-compensated for their important work, and our schools should not be burdened with incessant high-stakes testing.
Over 500,000 working poor Florida citizens remain without health insurance. Would you support tapping federal dollars to cover these people? If not, what kind of plan do you support? (limit 150 words)
I strongly support expanding Medicaid to the approximately 800,000 Floridians who fall into the coverage gap because they make too much to qualify for subsidies, but do not make enough to afford coverage.
An estimated 300,000 people died from gun violence between 2004 and 2014. Here at home in Orlando, the June 12 nightclub shooting saw 49 people killed, and 50 more wounded. Do you support or oppose a state ban on assault weapons and/or more thorough background checks? (limit 150 words)
I am in favor of banning military-style assault weapons and expanding background checks, both by closing loopholes in background check requirements, as in the case of private sales, and by implementing measures that would make these checks more thorough.
It is imperative that we take steps to curb gun violence in our state and nation.