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Wilton Manors Commissioners took a big step toward fulfilling some of their civic engagement diversity goals at Tuesday night’s meeting.

The commission made five board appointments, including Carvelle Estriplet, a Black trans woman and small business owner.  

“I’m ecstatic,” said Estriplet, when reached by telephone Tuesday night.

Estriplet owns a Wilton Drive bicycle shop where she offers repairs, rentals and sales. She was one of two appointments to the Community Affairs Advisory Board.

“As a resident, engaged volunteer and now a small business owner in Wilton Manors — Carvelle will be a tremendous asset to our community and CAAB,” wrote Commissioner Chris Caputo in a Facebook post. “As a proud Black trans woman, I am certain Carvelle’s unique background, ideas and perspective will demonstrate the benefits of diversity in governance.” 

Estriplet said she hoped to be a part of change and inclusiveness in the city and bring fresh views to CAAB.

The other CAAB appointment went to Paul Smith, a Black man and retired U.S. Army officer and psychotherapist.

Commissioners made three appointments to the Budget Review Advisory Committee. They are William Hayden, Michael Kalb and Van Gosselin.

Vice Mayor Paul Rolli said the city is getting more qualified applicants for board positions. Commissioners voted to eliminate their ranking procedure for board appointments in favor of a more neutral checkmark selection.

“We didn’t feel the rankings served any purpose,” Rolli said.

At Rolli’s request, commissioners approved a plan to light up city hall on Jan. 19 at 5:30 p.m. in the colors of red, white and blue to signify a change in administrations in Washington, D.C.

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