Dolphin Democrats observed Black History Month during the Club’s Annual Meeting (February 21) with a Keynote Speech by U.S. Representative Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.).
The Congressman accepted a Black History Month proclamation from Wilton Manors Mayor Gary Resnick and proceeded to speak about the recent shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Rep. Hastings strongly condemned Florida Governor Rick Scott and the Republican Legislature for their pro-gun policies (especially the state law that bans local governments from enacting gun control ordinances) and the Trump Administration for its anti-LGBT record. Hastings endorsed Dean Trantalis for Mayor of Fort Lauderdale, praised fellow activists Lottie Albert and Verna Johnson, and promised to add Wilton Manors’ proclamation to the Congressional Record.
Following Rep. Hastings’s address, members of the Dolphin Democrats proceeded to elect members of the Club’s Board of Directors. The Nominating Committee – Alfredo Olvera, Brad Bonds and Nik Harris -- submitted nominees for three of the five Board vacancies: Naomi Siegel (running for re-election), Steve Hanley and Michael Stara.
Candidates Jason King, Vance Lyles and Carin Rose were nominated from the floor. The top five vote-getters were elected: Naomi Siegel, Steve Hanley, Jason King, Vance Lyles and Michael Stara. Olvera thanked members for their vote; and also thanked outgoing Directors Verna Johnson and Ed Leuchs for their past service.
Members of the Dolphin Democrats also voted to endorse a candidate for City Commission District 2 in the upcoming Fort Lauderdale Municipal Elections. They voted to endorse out candidate Steve Glassman, the only candidate on the ballot. Opposing candidate Tim Smith made a point of order regarding him being left off the ballot considering he submitted a questionnaire in December 2017, but Parliamentarian Justin Proffitt and other Directors ruled that Smith submitted an endorsement request/questionnaire for the primary election and that endorsement requirements must be made for each election separately. Thus candidate Tim Smith was not eligible. Glassman joins Dean Trantalis, whom the Dolphin Democrats had already endorsed for Mayor of Fort Lauderdale.