I was born in Hazlet, NJ in 1958. My mother and father had five children, all boys. My father served in the Navy and my mother served on the local school board. My first job was at a refrigerated food warehouse where I learned responsibility and the meaning of hard work.
After having several low paying jobs, I decided to get serious about my future and realized if I wanted to start a family, I needed a job that provided real benefits. I heard about an opportunity with a labor union and I signed up to be an Ironworker. That was the first job that gave me a living wage and benefits for my family. I also had a pension that would provide me benefits and secure my future for retirement. For those who do not know what an Ironworker is, it is the people you see climbing skyscrapers and walking across the beams to connect the iron.
In 1991, I moved to Port St. Lucie to be closer to my parents in their later years. I found work locally as an Ironworker and started getting more involved in the leadership at my local. In 1999, I ran for president of Ironworkers local 402 and won. Three years later, I was elected the Business Manager, which is a higher position in the union than president is. I have subsequently been re-elected five times. As Business Manager of Ironworkers Local 402, I helped create an annuity that is used by our retired members to supplement their retirement benefits. It started with $1 and now has over $3,000,000 dollars in it. With the rising costs of living expenses in retirement, I am glad that our members have something extra to help them.
I have continued to help my members and community by sitting on the St. Lucie Contractor and Licensing Board, the Career Source board, Southeast Ironworker Pension Fund, St. Lucie Planning and Zoning board, and the Solar Energy Loan Fund where I was a founding member. I have experience and knowledge from a wide range of fields on different subject matters that only helps me understand the nuance of the different areas in government and how best to cut through bureaucracy. Bottom line, this means I can do the job from day one!
I am married to Debra Mitchell and I am the father of six children and I have seven grandchildren.
I am a results driven person. I am a job creator and that is what I want to do for St. Lucie County. I know I can get the job done. Thank you for your support.