Sarasota County, FL - Board of Elections

Candidate Statement

Mitzie Fiedler

WHY I’M RUNNING FOR VENICE CITY COUNCIL

Many Americans are dissatisfied with government. We hear about politicians making special deals to benefit special interests or getting so entrenched in a position that doesn’t allow for compromise.

I’ve decided not to sit back and complain, but rather to be part of the solution—a player rather than a spectator. I am not beholden to anyone or aligned to a set way of thinking. If I am elected to serve on the City Council, I can assure you that I will walk into Council Chambers with a clean and fresh slate.

I’ve accomplished big things in my 40-year career in business and community service. I’m a consensus builder. I care about serving the entire community of Venice. I have a track record for working with government officials, developers, educators, business leaders and citizens with different agendas.

Managing Growth Responsibly

Like most of you, my husband Bruce and I moved to Venice for the gorgeous weather, the spectacular shoreline with beautiful beaches and parks, the vibrant and charming downtown, the variety of good restaurants, the friendly and laid-back vibe and the proximity to the best culture Florida has to offer.

The desirability of Venice as a wonderful place to live is no longer a secret. And like you, I’m seeing the growth all around. Thousands of homes are being built. Traffic is increasing not just in season, but all year round.

Growth is on everyone’s minds, as I’ve learned by talking to residents and businesses throughout the city. We know growth is inevitable, and much of it is desired and positive. But it needs to be balanced and managed responsibly.

With growth comes new challenges for infrastructure, new demands for services and increased pressures on budgets. I will be your watchdog to ensure that all these issues are addressed in a manner that will protect your quality of life and the investments you have made in Venice.

The Venice City Council is developing a new Comprehensive Plan and Land Development Regulations that will address topics including development, housing density, traffic, environment and maintenance and improvements of our roads and buildings, to name a few items.

This document contains a vision for our future, a wish list. The work that needs to be done is to set a plan that is practical, cost-effective and sensitive to the needs—and pocketbooks—of all our citizens.

BIOGRAPHY/QUALIFICATIONS

Since arriving in Venice, I have immersed myself into the charm, culture and government of our wonderful City.

Currently, I am on two advisory boards: Code Enforcement and Environmental Advisory. We are helping to write the environmental language in our comprehensive plan. In addition,

I serve on the environmental committee for the League of Women Voters that is developing programs that will sustain the environment statewide. I am also the chair of the educational committee for the League of Women Voters; we are tackling the issues of literacy and charter schools in Sarasota County.

I am a consultant to Designing Women, a non-profit in Sarasota helping them partner with New College and Ringling College to create internship opportunities for their college students.

I have spent over 30 years in public school systems. As a principal at an elementary, a middle school, and a high school, I not only hired and supervised my faculty, but also wrote grant applications, established curricula, and chaired dozens of committees with faculty, administrators, parents, and government officials. My psychology background taught me “people” skills: how to communicate, how to build consensus, how to compromise: basically, how to get things done.

Throughout my career in education, I have also enjoyed a secondary career in community service.

> In Wisconsin, I founded two schools for students who were ‘falling through the cracks” by creating a coalition among public schools, local business, the local college, and the public library. My grant secured funding for both schools. Other grants that I wrote helped to fund summer programs involving students in the community; these programs were my own creation, as well.

> As Board President of the YWCA, I spearheaded the creation of shelters for battered women and their children.

> I also served as the Board President for the Wisconsin Council for the Gifted and Talented. Our council created partnerships between states and within cities to design programs for children and to help craft state legislation.

> In Texas, I served on two city boards. As a member of the Environmental Board, I collaborated with the University of North Texas, the EPA, and the city of Denton to write city codes and ordinances that protected the environment. On the Grant advisory board, I managed the dispersal of federal and state grant money to local organizations.

I earned a doctoral degree from the University of Wisconsin in Educational Administration and a minor in Educational Psychology.

As you can see, whether in schools, at a local city level, or at a state level, I have a long history of serving on or leading teams geared to solve problems. I look forward to working on the Venice City Council towards that same end.