Editor, The Beacon:

I believe the next mayor of DeLand should have broad experience in dealing with community issues, as well as the ability to bring people together to resolve issues and agree on a path forward.

I do not believe experience as a part-time elected member of a governing body necessarily provides that experience or ability.

It appears to me that one candidate, Reggie Williams, has demonstrated the requisite qualities over a full-time public-service career of more than 40 years.

Additionally, Reggie and his family are and have been residents of DeLand for more than 50 years, providing extensive knowledge of DeLand and its history, as well as current issues facing the city.

In my experience, working as both an employee and consultant for well-over 100 local elected members of city and county governing bodies, I do not believe there is any advantage for a new mayor or chair to come from the ranks of current elected board members. I much prefer to see a new mayor have a broader wealth of experience than a single elected office can provide. I believe Mr. Williams has that experience.

Richard Kelton



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