Two West Kendall Community Council 11 members have drawn opponents in the Aug. 14 election while a third unopposed incumbent will not appear on the ballot.
“I was five minutes late in getting to the Elections Office to get my papers approved on June 8,” lamented Joseph E. Delaney (Sub Area 114) who was elected in 2008. “At least two others were also held up by traffic and failed to make the five o’clock filing dead- line by just a few minutes.”
Delaney now will await a decision by District 11 Commissioner Joe A. Martinez for his potential re-appoint- ment to Sub Area 114, which extends generally from SW 72nd Street to SW 120th Street, between SW 137th and SW 177th (Krome) avenues.
Veteran member Jeff Wander has been challenged by newcomer Daniel Ojeda for the SubArea 112 seat and Ileana Petisco, recently appointed to represent SubArea 116, will face first- time candidate Carolina Blanco.
The contested SubArea candidates and boundaries:
SW 42nd Street (north); SW 72nd Sreet (south); SW 117th Avenue (east); SW 177th Avenue (west)
“My reason for running is simple,” Daniel Ojeda said. “My interest is to benefit the people and decisions I will represent.
“I will be glad to discuss and under- stand every point of view so I can share my opinion and be reasonable with my decision and vote as a council member for Miami-Dade County,” he added.
A Hialeah native, he is the son of journalist Marilyn Gonzalez and veteran businessman and politician Dr. Alfredo Ojeda, advisor to President Carlos Andres Perez Rodriguez of Venezuela, who served from1974 to 1979 and 1989 to 1993.
In Venezuela and the U.S., Ojeda studied in different schools and colleges while exposed to his parents’ diplomatic environment. In 2002, he began a course in Liberal Arts at the Universidad Metropolitana in Caracas before moving to the U.S. to study political science. During leadership/negotiation courses and public relations seminars, he held positions in show business and advertising fields.
“I have a passion for doing what’s right for West Kendall,” Jeff Wander said.
“I have always been a proponent of smart growth. It is my goal to help West Kendall attain that sense of hometown and the infrastructure that goes along with a superior quality of life.”
A Brooklyn, NY, native who moved to Miami-Dade County in 1974, Wander has resided in West Kendall since 1984 and currently serves as a Court Security Officer with the U.S. Marshall Service for the U.S. Southern District of Florida at the Miami Courthouse. Retired as a Miami- Dade Police sergeant since 2003, Wander, a graduate with a B.A. degree in Criminal Justice from Biscayne College, holds an M.S. degree in Public Administration/ Management from St. Thomas University.
A resident of the Lakes of the Meadow, he and his wife, Martha, are parents of three adult children, Marcus, Matthew and Meagan.
SW 120th Street (north); SW 184th Street (south); SW 157th/SW 147th Avenues (east); SW 177th (Krome) Avenue (west).
“As a lifetime resident of District 11, I have seen this community evolve,” said Carolina Blanco, who feels “a personal connection to our community and its residents, including my neighbors, family and friends.
“Our community continues to grow and we need to be involved in the progress while preserving its rich history,” she added.
Born and raised in Kendall, Blanco attended Bent Tree Elementary and Howard D. McMillan Middle School before graduating from G. Holmes Braddock Senior High School, all within District 11.
She received a bachelor’s degree in public administration from Florida International University and presently serves as a teacher for Miami-Dade Public Schools.
She and her husband are parents of two children.
“I have dedicated myself to serve my constituents through tireless work in the community and the council, protecting our West Kendall neighborhoods,” said Ileana Petisco, appointed by District 11 Commissioner Joe A. Martinez on Dec. 6, 2011.
She said she will “continue to advocate adherence to the approved master plan, protect the urban development boundary and promote responsible and necessary projects,” adding “Integrity is not for sale.”
Petisco, who holds a BA degree in Sociology and Anthropology from Florida International University and is a graduate of the University of Miami School of Nursing, now is employed at the UM Miller School of Medicine.
She and her husband, Jose, are the parents of Daniel, Anabelle and Andrew.