Sarasota County, FL - Board of Elections

Candidate Statement

Pete Theisen


Friday, 23 January 2009 20:39

Updated 4/15/2013

Retired Acupuncturist, University of Detroit, Wayne State University, University of Michigan, Manatee Community College, Florida Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

I started working at age 8 on my Grandfather's Farm as a field hand. The big guys said I was keeping up, but they might have been humoring me. I worked through college in construction, retail, sales and manufacturing. Later as a Master Mechanic, Public Housing Worker and even in Interstate Transportation. I have been active in Volunteer and Charity work.

I'm an ordinary guy. I don't have a network of largely out-of-town supporters such as you see with some other candidates (examine their financial reports!). As such, my allegiance is to those who vote for me, not to people from somewhere else who more than likely intend to deepen their own pocket at the expense of the Sarasota taxpayer.

Why else would we keep on hearing about "land give-aways" to developers and other sweetheart deals? Not to mention bribes to businesses. Don't even start on "concurrency"!

I graduated from the University of Detroit in 1968.

The University of Detroit was a home town school where local students got their education, not somewhere you went to socialize with people who had "connections" who were going to get you into upper management before you were thirty. I lived with my parents while I completed my undergraduate degree, worked all kinds of jobs to pay my way through, and graduated debt free.

I took my undergraduate degree at the University of Detroit, and took post graduate courses at the other schools. Years after I graduated, U of D merged with another Catholic school, Mercy College, and became U of D Mercy.

I worked as a community organizer for the Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit for a while after graduating, and then for the City of Detroit in public housing. Then I pursued a career in a small auto service business until the Carter crash wiped me, and nearly everyone else, out.

I worked odd jobs in Detroit during the Carter crash until it became obvious that Detroit would not recover any time in my career and moved to Sarasota (El Rene Hotel, anyone remember that?) in 1981 and to Sarasota County in 1982. I lived on Reynolds Street (several blocks south of Gulf Gate Drive) behind a store. I worked a variety of jobs and finally became an 18 wheeler driver, touring the whole "lower 48 states" and Canada for several years.

I decided on the road that I wanted to go to medical school and returned home, buying my current place on Wood Street, East of the Trail, for $27,500 furnished. The taxes on my home on Wood Street in 1991 were $18 per year. The most recent bill was $231.37. They took a big jump when the "Non-Ad Valorem Assessment" was added.

I attended Manatee Community College part time for several years to gather missing Pre-Med credits and eventually started Medical School when I was 50 years old. My father died of Alzheimer's a week or two before I started and I don't think he ever realized what I was embarking upon. My mother had died in 1984.

My practice speciality was Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Traditional Chinese Medicine in America encompasses not only the content of "Oriental Medicine" - Acupuncture, Herbs and a physical manipulation technique called Tui Na, but also the full content of Western Medicine. I commuted daily to St. Petersburg for classes for three years, and returned to work night shifts every night in Sarasota to pay my school expenses. Had I been a little younger I would have taken a slightly longer internship and become an MD, but I was already 56 by the time I finished the first internship so I didn't.

The Florida Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine closed a few years ago, after its headmaster, Dr. Su Liang Ku, retired. While I was at FITCM I organized the FITCM Foundation, Inc. which is now known as the Sun Health Foundation, Inc. I still visit with Dr. Ku from time to time.

I served on the board of directors of the Sun Health Foundation. Inc. until it closed as a result of the "Great Recession". The project of the foundation was to develop a medical record software system that will facilitate research. This also died due to lack of support. Doctors don't like computers, it turns out.

I was injured in a series of traffic accidents in 2004 and 2005 and retired, closing my clinic, a few years ago after the insurance companies declined to pay for the full extent of my injuries.

One of my colleagues from FITCM finally hit on a course of treatments that has helped me to regain quite a bit of my health. The "other guys" wanted to abandon me to "Pain Management" , which would have killed me outright or at least have drugged me to the point of complete dysfunction. Now I am more-or-less normal, for a 68 year old.