Editor, The Beacon:
My name is Emily Cloudman, and I am a 16-year-old dual-enrolled sophomore at DeLand High School and Daytona State College.
I am currently the sophomore class vice president at DHS, and an active member of Renaissance, Future Farmers of America, Interact, The Green Club and Leadership.
I was most recently elected as Homecoming royalty and represented the Class of 2025 as their duchess. I carry a 4.2 grade-point average. Beyond the time I spend at school, I am active with West Volusia Young Life, The Mid-Florida Sporting Dog Association, the Golden Retriever Club of America, and the American Quarter Horse Association.
I am employed by FloridaWild Veterinary Hospital as a veterinary technician, and hope to one day graduate from the University of Florida as a DVM.
I am grateful for the people and opportunities I have been given in the community of DeLand to become a strong leader and to help shape me to be the young woman I am today.
Why does any of what I just shared matter? Well, it matters because DeLand is about to make some big changes, the current mayor of 21 years is about to retire, and we as a community are going to elect a new mayor.
The people and experiences of DeLand have made me the person I am and am becoming. I am the future of DeLand.
DeLand is a unique community, and it deserves a mayor who is not only willing to continue promoting and protecting our diversity, culture, small-town feel and quality of life, but also knows and has the experience of how that is accomplished.
For the past 12 years, I have had the sincere privilege to watch my father, Chris Cloudman, be an advocate and voice for the people of DeLand. There is not one vote or decision that my father makes that he has not researched or thoroughly thought about from both sides.
I have seen my dad give up numerous weekends and evenings to further his education as it relates to issues within DeLand, so that he can help continue moving our community forward.
DeLand deserves a committed mayor with the education, experience, energy and open-mindedness my dad has.
I cannot begin to tell you how proud I am of my dad and what he does day in and day out for DeLand. I truly believe it is in the best interest of DeLand that on Tuesday, Nov. 8, we as a community elect Chris Cloudman as our new mayor.