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					Florida Department of State Glenda E. Hood Secretary of State

MEDIA ADVISORY
For Immediate Release April 18, 2003 Contact: Christina Johnson (850) 339-5773
ccjohnson@mail.dos.state.fl.us

SECRETARY GLENDA HOOD ANNOUNCES THE MEMBERS OF THE FLORIDA HELP AMERICA VOTE ACT (HAVA) PLANNING COMMITTEE TALLAHASSEE, FL – Secretary of State Glenda Hood is pleased to announce the members of the Florida Help America Vote Act Planning Committee. The Planning Committee, mandated by the Federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002, is tasked with creating a plan that establishes how Florida will use the federal funding to replace punch card voting systems, improve voter education, train poll workers and to carry out other activities to improve in the administration of elections. “Florida set a model for the rest of the nation when it passed the Election Reform Act of 2001 and the Voter Accessibility Act of 2002,” said Secretary Hood. “In 2003 we will continue our commitment to improve Florida’s elections process so that all registered voters in Florida are able to cast their votes with confidence. This is my top priority as Florida’s Chief Election’s Officer.”

The HAVA Planning Committee is made up of 18 individuals statewide, each representing a unique perspective in Florida’s voting population. The legislation states that “the Chief State election official shall develop the State plan under this subtitle through a committee of appropriate individuals, including the chief election officials of the 2 most populous jurisdictions in the State, other local election officials, stakeholders (including representatives of groups of individuals with disabilities), and other citizens, appointed for such purpose by the chief State election official.” (more)

Four statewide HAVA planning committee meetings will be hosted in order to seek input from interested constituency groups and citizens. Transcripts of the meetings and the final report will be made available in English, Spanish and Creole via the Department of State’s website. The statewide meetings are as follows: Friday, April 25, 2003 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Betty Easley Conference Center 4075 Esplanade Way, Room 166 Tallahassee Monday, May 12, 2003 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Supervisor of Elections Training Facility 3040 Fowler Street Ft. Myers Tuesday, May 6, 2003 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Office of the Supervisor of Elections 240 South Military Trail West Palm Beach Thursday, May 15, 2003 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Office of the Supervisor of Elections 119 West Kaley Street Orlando

For more information on planning committee meeting agendas, please contact: Dr. Mark Pritchett Executive Vice President Collins Center for Public Policy, Inc. 1415 East Piedmont Drive, Suite One Tallahassee, FL 32308 (850) 219-0082 x105 www.collinscenter.org Additional information on HAVA, including the bill in its entirety may be found at www.fec.gov/hava. The Florida HAVA Planning Committee members are as follows: Jim Smith – Smith will serve as Chairman of the Florida Help America Vote Act Planning Committee. He has served as Florida's Secretary of State four times – twice appointed and twice elected. Smith served as Co-Chairman of Governor Bush's Election Reform Task Force following Florida’s 2000 Presidential Election. He is a partner of Smith, Ballard and Logan, P.A. Kurt Browning - Supervisor of Elections in Pasco County, elected in 1980 and the youngest ever to hold that position in Florida. Browning served on Governor Bush's Task Force on Election Procedures, Standards and Technology in 2001, and is the current Legislative Chairman of the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections. Joe Celestin – Mayor, City of North Miami. Celestin is a native of Haiti and is the first AfricanAmerican to be elected to that position and the first ever Haitian American Mayor in the United States. Celestin is a member of the Florida League of Cities and is founder of the Haitian– American Political Action Committee. (more)

Anna Cowin – State Senator from District 20, elected in 1996. Chair of the Committee on Ethics and Elections and serves on eight additional committees, including Senate Education and Governmental Oversight and Productivity. Dave Evans - State Board Member of the National Federation of the Blind. He is also a former aerospace professional. Susan Gill - Supervisor of Elections in Citrus County, elected in 1996. Gill has served on the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections Legislative Committee, Get Out The Vote Foundation, Chairman of the Scholarship Committee and Co-Chair of the Education & Training committee. Gill is also a member of the Election Center. Jane Gross – President of the Florida League of Women Voters and a member of the Broward League since 1986. Gross serves on the Broward County Elections Reform committee that was formed after the 2002 primary election. Lindsay Harrington – State Representative from District 72, elected in 1996. Serves as Speaker Pro Tempore, Vice Chair of the Subcommittee on Ethics and Elections. Harrington also served on Governor Bush’s 2002 Select Task Force on Election Reform. Arthur Hernandez – Vice Chairman of the Jacksonville Mayor’s Hispanic American Advisory Board. He is Principle and CEO of Arthur Hernandez, Esq. and serves as Secretary/Treasurer of the Jacksonville Defense Bar Association and is a member of the Florida Bar. Shirley Green Knight - Supervisor of Elections in Gadsden County, elected in 2000. Knight is the first female and the first African American to be elected to the office of Supervisor of Elections in Gadsden County. She has served on the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections Board of Directors 2001-2002 and its New Supervisor of Elections Caucus and Small County Caucus. Jim Kracht – Assistant County Attorney for Miami-Dade County. Kracht served on Governor Bush’s Select Task Force on Voting Accessibility 2000-2001 and has been a legal advisor since 1978 to the Miami-Dade County Commission on Disability Issues. He is a member of the American Blind Lawyers Association, American Council of the Blind, and the Florida Council of the Blind. Richard LaBelle - Secretary of the Florida Coalition on Disability Rights, a statewide coalition of disability advocacy, service groups and persons with disabilities. He is principle of The Law Offices of Richard LaBelle, P.A., concentrated in the areas of disability law and elder law. His firm administers the First Florida Pooled Trust, a special needs trust created under Federal law for persons with disabilities. David Leahy - Supervisor of Elections in Miami-Dade County, appointed in 1981. Mr. Leahy served on the Federal Election Commission's Absentee Voting Project Advisory Board, various state committees and is a past president of the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections. Leahy is automatically appointed to the committee as federal law dictates the Supervisor of Elections from the two most populous jurisdictions serve on this committee. (more)

Percy Luney - Dean and Professor of Law at Florida A & M University and most recently President of the National Judicial College, the oldest state judicial education and training institution in the United States. Previously, Luney was Dean and Professor of Law at North Carolina Central University School of Law in 1980 and Duke University School of Law in 1984. Reggie McGill – Human Relations Director for the City of Orlando. McGill’s community service includes having served on the Board of Directors for the Florida Association of Community Relations Professionals, Inc. and membership to 100 Black Men of Orlando, Inc. Miriam Oliphant - Supervisor of Elections in Broward County, elected in 2000. Oliphant previously was appointed by Governor Lawton Chiles to the Broward County School Board in 1991, the second African American to serve on the panel that governs one of the nations' largest public school systems. Oliphant is automatically appointed to the committee as federal law dictates the Supervisor of Elections from the two most populous jurisdictions serve on this committee. Isis Segarra – Born in Cuba, Segarra came to the United States in 1960 and became an American Citizen on June 12, 1970. She has worked throughout her Hillsborough community as a translator and interpreter of the Spanish language. Lori Stelzer – President of the Florida Association of City Clerks. Stelzer has been City Clerk for the City of Venice for ten years and has been an active member of the Florida Association of City Clerks. As City Clerk she serves as the election official for the City of Venice. Raiza Tamayo – Regional Director, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Born in Cuba, Tamayo moved to Florida in 1986. Hispanic Magazine has recognized her company, American Paving Contractors, Inc. every year from 1997 through 2001 as one of the top 100 fastest growing Hispanic businesses in the United States. ###


				
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