Vote

BREVARD COUNTY — As the Nov. 3 General Elections approach, it’s time to start thinking about who to cast your ballot for.

Below are the candidate profiles for those interested in filling the seats of your Town of Melbourne Beach Commissioner-at-Large.

Hometown News could not reach Paul D. Carlson at this time.

Joyce D. Barton, 64

Number of years as resident: Homeowner since 2004, permanent resident for nine years

Occupation and company you work for: President of the Beach Gardeners of Melbourne Beach; President of the South Brevard Garden Club Association; Entrepreneur

Education: N/A

Marital status: N/A

Number of children: Three children, one grandson

What makes you the best candidate for this seat?: “I support the height restrictions and residential character of our town. A huge advocate for awareness and protection of our homes and shoreline.

“I support local businesses with more options to serve residents and visitors. I believe in fiscal responsibility in improving our roads, utilities and storm drainage systems to keep up with demands.

“I have over 30 years’ experience in management of people and business. I will bring my expertise to address the issues at hand in our town.

“I love this town and pledge to work hard in the best interest of all, to serve as your commissioner and to be approachable with your ideas, thoughts and concerns.”

Paul Carlson, 51

Number of years as resident: Three-plus years on Melbourne Beach and seven-plus on Satellite Beach

Occupation and company you work for: Retired Navy Aviation Rescue Swimmer/Melbourne Beach Volunteer Fire Dept.

Education: Embry Riddle Aeronatical University

BS in Professional Aeronautics with Safety and Management minors;

BS in Unmanned Aircraft Systems with Private Pilot- IN WORK- Expected Graduation Fall of 2021.

Marital status: Widowed

Number of children: Four adult children

What makes you the best candidate for this seat?:  “Having extensively traveled the world and country, I chose Melbourne Beach because of location and the people found here. Bringing my experience in diplomacy and communication from my Navy career will assist in problem solving.

“Serving as a Deputy and now as a Fireman demonstrates my commitment to my neighbors. I simply believe in the right solution versus a party line or agenda. The safety, charm and responsible growth of our community is and should be the only goal of our town leaders. I sincerely hope to assist others in accomplishing this.”

Gail Gowdy, 69

Number of years as resident: 20-plus years

Occupation and company you work for: Retired data analyst / manager for Verizon Corp.

Education: No degree, but attended Villanova University, Pa and took many as needed courses throughout my career.

Marital status: Married to Reggie

Number of children: Two step-daughters, two step-sons and one grandson

What makes you the best candidate for this seat?: “I’ve served the people of Melbourne Beach as commissioner before, and have the experience of day to day operations as well as budgets and also served as the town’s representative on the county TPO board. I have also been on two town boards, the Planning and Zoning Board and the Board of Adjustments.

“I am a member of the local DAR chapter and a member of the Beach Gardeners and the Brevard/Florida Gourd Society and life member of the Sea Turtle Preservation Society and Friends of our Library.

“I have no hidden agendas and want what’s best for our small town and its citizens.”

Associate Managing Editor

I have been a Viera resident for 15 years and a writer my whole life. I love to travel when the opportunity presents itself, as well as try new things.

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