Fort Lauderdale Commissioner Dean Trantalis kicked off his campaign for re-election Monday night , laying out a set of priorities he intends to accomplish during another term representing District 2.
“I do my best, I’m not perfect, but I know how to work with people to get things done,” Trantalis told the crowd gathered at ArtServe.
Trantalis, who has served multiple terms on the Fort Lauderdale City Commission, represents a large swath of the city, including the beach.
“Dean is successful working with the commission,” said Fred Carlson, President of the Central Beach Alliance, a homeowners association.
Carlson spoke to the crowd inside ArtServe, encouraging them to back Trantalis, a former Vice Mayor of Fort Lauderdale, first elected to the City Commission in 2003. Trantalis is openly gay and a bachelor.
“I don’t care if he’s gay or straight,” Carlson said. “Dean does a great job.”
In his speech at ArtServe, Trantalis said he “knows where we’re going and what we need to do.”
In its 2013 count, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated Fort Lauderdale to have a population of 172,389. The city, according to U.S. Census Bureau, has a higher overall percentage of people living below the poverty line than the State of Florida average.
“We continue to have a homeless problem,” Trantalis said.
Having called Fort Lauderdale home for more than 30 years, Trantalis said fighting poverty must come with a compassionate component. Trantalis also signaled support for private business developers operating inside Fort Lauderdale.
“How we embrace people from all walks of life enriches this city,” Trantalis said.
A native of Connecticut, Trantalis has practiced law in Broward County for more than 25 years. He completed his legal studies at Stetson University School of Law and has studied abroad in London, Eastern Europe and Russia.
SFGN selected Trantalis to last year’s Out 50, an annual issue highlighting 50 of South Florida’s most influential openly gay people. Additionally, on Monday, Pride South Florida announced Trantalis is the recipient of its “Medallion Award of Distinction for his lifetime of service to the LGBT community. Trantalis faces first-time candidate David Tabb in the March 10 election.