When Heidi Siegel, formerly Heidi Shafran, left Wilton Manors to become the city manager of Biscayne Park in Miami in 2013, she came to a city much like the LGBT-friendly one she left.
“We have a very quiet bedroom gay and lesbian community here. We’re 100 percent residential so it’s a pretty quiet community when it comes to that. From a residential perspective, it is very similar to Wilton Manors. A lot of the groundwork [on LGBT issues] was done before I got here.”
Although Biscayne Park’s residents are already getting the benefit of LGBT-friendly policies and practices, Siegel said she’s still able to offer something positive as city manager.
“I don’t think it impacts my job but I think being gay makes me a little conscious of inequities and justice and I think that’s a good quality to have as a city manager.”
Married last year, Siegel is glad the law has changed but she also thinks there are other ways to change minds about the LGBT community.
“I hope I’m seen as a professional with interiority. Just through my actions, it might change people’s opinions without having to get into political debates.”