Sarasota County, FL - Board of Elections

Candidate Statement

Mike Shlasko

Mike has been a full time resident of Gulf View Estates, a community just south of the City of Venice and near the beaches of Manasota Key for the past 11 years. Mike was born in Cleveland, OH, moved to NYC at age 10, married his wife of 40 years, Andrea, and raised two sons, Ian & Sam, in the northern suburbs of NYC.

Mike is running for Charter Review Board because we need more representative Democracy, not less, more citizen involvement in our government, not less! Misguided efforts to eliminate our elected Charter Review Board must be stopped. We need the CRB as a citizens watchdog, not a commission lapdog and we need it to be more effective, not less effective

Mike has a degree in Interdisciplinary Social Sciences with emphasis on Political Science from the State University of NY at Stony Brook. Upon graduation, he followed in his fathers footsteps by entering a career in Information Technology. Mike progressed from computer programmer to systems analyst to Director of Software Development to owner of his own small computer business where he provided computer hardware and software to small (under $100 million) companies in the NYC metro area to automate their accounting processes.

In the latter half of his 35 year career Mike worked primarily for Fortune 500 technology companies in Business Development and Vertical Marketing roles with titles like Director of the Public Safety Market and Director of Business Development for Global Government Solutions. In those roles Mike visited every state in the U.S. and developed a good appreciation for the diversity that makes our country great. Mike became expert at complex government procurement processes and spent more time reading statutes than his preferred Sci-Fi novels. Mike was also heavily involved with a number of Government Industry Associations and with the creation of North American standards for machine readable Driver's Licenses. Mike also holds a patent related to age verification in a retail setting using Driver's License documents.

After 2,000,000 air miles and too much time away from family Mike retired to Sarasota County and after a couple of years of sunsets and boating and billiards he decided that it was time to give back to the community. Mike is the past President and current Board Member of his local homeowners association and as a fiscal conservative, Mike has presided over 6 years without a maintenance fee increase in his community and has worked on the restatement of both the Bylaws and the Easements, Covenants and Deed Restrictions. Mike also is heavily involved in Sea Turtle Conservation and Shorebird monitoring work on Manasota Key where he has volunteered with his wife Andrea under a permit from the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission for the past 7 years.

Since 2013 Mike has been involved in Democratic Party and is a member of the Board of the Venice Area Democratic Club and the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida and is also the founder and President of the Sarasota-Charlotte Democratic Progressive Caucus. Mike is also a Democratic Party Precinct Committeeman in his home Precinct #539. While a proud Progressive Democrat who supports strong government, Mike believes that partisanship should not get in the way of efficiently and openly doing the peoples business in Sarasota County.