www.ambiente.us AUGUST |AGOSTO 2010
SCOTT GALVIN for U.S. Congress| Why Him, Why Now?
by Herb Sosa
In 2004 he became the first sitting elected official in South
Florida to announce that he is gay. Today he is making a bid for
the U.S. Congress.
Scott Galvin has never looked back.
"It was my decision to come out. I wanted it to happen on my own terms. I was
angered by President Bush saying we needed to amend the U.S. Constitution to outlaw
gay marriage. As a gay man, I could not sit quietly while someone spoke of amending
the Constitution to take away rights of a minority." said Galvin
HS| As an international Board of Directors member for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation
(AHF), the nation’s largest work with many individuals in need, offering cutting-edge
medicine and advocacy, regardless of ability to pay to more than 27,000 people in the
United States, Africa, Central America and Asia. What would you say are the pressing
needs of the South Florida LGBT community today and why?
SG| Education and testing are the biggest issues in South Florida. Everyone should
get tested regularly! That’s why the AHF clinic in Wilton Manors offers testing,
medicine, and great counseling services. You can also shop next door at our “Out of
the Closet” Thrift Store, too!
SHOP AT THE DOT
offer some great
discounts & specials.
Being a bit of a wise soul, I have long realized that our time on Earth is
precious. I hope in the end that I will have made my community a better
place in which to live. Every day, I hear from people who are
disenchanted with the political process in this country. I hope I will have
restored some of their faith in this wonderful democracy in which we live.
HS| Do you believe there are still limitations for openly gay politicians, and why?
SG | Yes, but it depends on where you live. Obviously, openly-gay officials are accepted in
metropolitan areas like South Florida. Were we in Utah, for instance, that might be different.
However, acceptance is coming quickly and by the time I’m 60, such prejudices will be
HS| Do you believe you will see in your lifetime and (openly) gay governor? President? Will it be
SG | It has long been said that if one works hard, you can be elected President of the United
States. But until now, that has only applied to white, Christian males. When Barack Obama
was elected this November, it signified that anyone truly can be elected President. That means
we will certainly see Presidents…and Governors…of many diverse backgrounds.
HS | What is historically significant in North Miami, and how do you hope to get the community to
SG | The things in North Miami that are worth preserving are the things that bring back fond
memories for the people who grew up here. We recently renovated the “Frog Pond” in front of
North Miami High School. It is just a simple pond surrounded by four concrete frogs, but we
restored it as a working fountain just last month. For the first time in decades, it works. You
wouldn't know the Frog Pond if you weren't from the area, but for those who live and grew up
there, it’s priceless.
HS | Professionally, you currently serve as the Vice President of Education for Junior
Achievement of Greater Miami, recruiting and training corporate volunteers to bring lessons of
finance and community to children across Miami-Dade County. You have also worked as a
teacher at Miami Country Day and are very involved in preservation and history. Why is
community involvement so important to you? How and why should youth become more involved
in their community?
SG | I began my community service simply because it was fun. And that’s really why I continue
to do it. I first ran for office when I was only 20 years old. I lost, but stayed involved and have
been able to help so many people since then. I love to bring a smile to the faces of people who
feel that no one cares.
The youth of our community need to get involved for a variety of reasons.
I always tell kids to find a cause in which they believe passionately and
volunteer. It allows them to help others and meet great people along
the way. Young people are usually focused on their own lives, and not on
the world and community around them. But sooner than they realize,
they become the ones inheriting problems and being expected to fix
them. Better to not have had their heads in the sand.
HS |How has your family played into your very publicly open career & life? (Brothers, sisters,
parents, etc) Have they always been supportive?
SG | Absolutely! Mom and dad are always the first to write a campaign check. Although mom
mad if I’m stay late at an event and she’s cooked dinner.
“A living wage in a stable job is the key to feeling and being safe in our community. I’ll fight
every day in Washington to bring every cent to our community through business investment,
local government partnerships, direct funding and jobs, jobs, jobs.”
– Scott Galvin
Florida’s 17th District is weathering an economic hurricane of declining home values,
shrinking local government budgets and soaring unemployment.
President Barack Obama and Congressman Kendrick Meek deserve credit for passing the
United States Economic Recovery Act to direct much needed federal resources to our
According to the United States Recovery website (www.Recovery.gov) the 17th
Congressional District has received approximately $244 million in recovery funding creating
or saving more than 200 jobs.
That’s good but not good enough.
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin will continue to fight for our share of federal dollars. Not
just through the federal recovery program (stimulus) but through every possible avenue to
create and sustain jobs in our community.
As an elected member of the North Miami City Council since 1999, Scott Galvin understands
that budget cuts by local governments have real consequences on families.
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin will work to make sure local governments – including our
local school districts and Miami-Dade and Broward Counties – have the funding they need to
avoid job losses in tough economic times.
LGBT youth interested in change & politics |
You should volunteer for a cause in which you
feel passionately. Learn about the issues that
are important to all of us. Don’t be afraid to
speak up. Most importantly, VOTE!
HS | What is (the city of) North Miami missing, and
what are you doing/have done to change that?
SG | I still hope for a vibrant downtown arts district
revolving around our immensely successful Museum of
Contemporary Art (MoCA). It is becoming a
destination point of restaurants, galleries,
and stores. I've already passed legislation creating the district and we've created special
allowances for arts-related stores. Now, we have to spread the word about the great
HS| How can people contact you to learn more about your work?
SG | For almost 10 years, I have maintained my own website at www.scott-galvin.com. It’s been
a great way to stay in contact with residents. They can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
North Miami is the only city in Miami-Dade County with two openly
-gay members serving on its Council (me and Mayor Kevin Burns).
Also, for over four years, the City of North Miami has provided domestic partner benefits to all city
employees regardless of gender and sexual orientation. They have also unanimously adopted a
procurement ordinance requiring contractors wishing to do business with the City to provide
equal health benefits to domestic partners in their companies.
It is in America’s vital interest for the United States and Israel to maintain their friendship and
“special relationship.” The relationship between Israel and the United States is strong and
unshakable, based on historic bonds, common values, strategic interests and a shared vision
for a peaceful and pluralistic future.
Since the reestablishment of the State of Israel in 1948, the state has been under constant
threat from its neighbors and other states in the region. Israel has consistently demonstrated
its willingness to make sacrifices in its pursuit of peace resulting in peace agreements with
Egypt and Jordan.
Israel’s government is on record supporting a two state solution to the Israel-Palestinian
conflict. The United States can play an important role in mediating talks that bring about
agreements between the parties, but a lasting peace requires the parties to reach mutual
agreements without solutions being imposed by the United States or other third parties.
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin will support these efforts as well as the ten (10) year
Memorandum of Understanding entered into by the United States and Israel and signed by
President Bush and Prime Minister Olmert.
The funds under this agreement are largely used to purchase military equipment
manufactured in the United States by American companies and help insure Israel’s defense
and provide for the expression of American interest throughout the region.
In addition, the economic stability of the State of Israel is a key component of our relationship,
and as your Congressman, Scott Galvin will support, should the Israeli government request it
in the future, direct economic aid.
The Iranian government, whose leadership violates international law by denying the
Holocaust and threatening to wipe Israel off the map, is a threat not only to Israel, but to the
United States and the rest of the western world. In the past, the Iranian government has used
terrorist proxies such as Hezbollah and Hamas for attacks on foreign soil. Its possession of
nuclear material or weapons could threaten the American homeland utilizing similar
“National security should be the top priority of every Congressman. Every American is proud
of our men and women in uniform and we can’t do enough to thank and support them. In
Washington, I’ll keep on eye on the excess but spare no expense to support our
soldiers.” — Scott Galvin
With American soldiers in danger in two foreign lands, President Obama has the right idea –
help Iraq and Afghanistan stand on their own.
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin will keep pressure on the White House to bring our
combat troops home from overseas as soon as possible. At the same time, Scott Galvin will
support the Commander-in-Chief in making strategic decisions about future investments in
Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Throughout most of our history, military service was more than a career option of last resort
– it was a first choice of countless Americans. Unfortunately, military service has lost its
appeal as a career choice in part because of the low pay, strain on families and lack of long-
term post-service support.
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin will fight to make sure we invest as much in our soldiers
as we do in our failing banks and automakers. The Department of Veteran’s Affairs should
have more than the money it needs to serve each and every American who honorably served
in uniform. Military pay and pensions should increase.
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin won’t just spend money on the military. He is committed
to protecting our tax dollars by cautiously reviewing and asking tough questions about the
most expensive and unproven military programs.
Israel, Iran and the “Middle East”
“The United States must remain a strong ally of Israel while advocating for an honest path to
long-term stability and increasing the pressure on Iran and other threats in the region.”
The U.S. must act, with urgency and determination, to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear
As your Congressman, Scott Galvin will support current and previous legislation as well as
international efforts to contain Iran as well as the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act.
“I support the approved national health care plan because it represents progress, not
because I see it as a solution. Like many progressives, I wanted more reform faster. I would
have liked anything that would have moved us closer to a uniform, rational national health
care system. I think improvement is not only possible but necessary. Health care is right, not
Many of the questions I’ve heard on the campaign trail come from the elderly or those with
existing conditions – people for whom medical care is a part of daily life. They are scared
and have questions. We need to establish ‘education’ hot lines where people can call and
ask questions.” -Scott Galvin
North Miami is the only city in
Miami-Dade County with two openly
-gay members serving on its
Council (Scott Galvin and Mayor Kevin
Also, for over four years, the City of North
Miami has provided domestic partner benefits
to all city employees regardless of gender
and sexual orientation. They have also
unanimously adopted a procurement
ordinance requiring contractors wishing to do
business with the City to provide equal health
benefits to domestic partners in their
In 2008, the entire North Miami City Council
was given the "Champions of Equality" award
by SAVE Dade, a South Florida-based LGBT
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