Become a Candidate
There are many opportunities for dynamic, viable Democratic candidates to win elected local positions.
In lieu of paying expensive filing fees, candidates can collect voter signatures to “earn” their way onto the ballot.
**Please note, you must live in the district in which a candidate is running to sign his/her petition.**
Mail signed petitions to: Charlotte County Democratic Party, PO Box 495896, Pt Charlotte, FL 33949
or drop them off at: 3695 Tamiami Trail.
Jim is an Emmy Award-Winning TV Journalist, News Director, Anchor, and Reporter. He has traveled the
world to cover America’s servicemen and women. Now, he wants to restore Florida for our children and
- We need home insurance that won’t bankrupt us.
- I will work to secure safe and affordable housing.
- Government should protect access to safe and legal reproductive care. Floridians should decide
when to start their families, NOT Tallahassee lawmakers.
- Red tide, blue-green algae, and seagrass degradation are robbing us of the paradise we prize. I
will fight the assault on our environment.
- Don’t erase history – learn from it. Public school students must be free to learn and should feel
safe and welcome. Extremists must stop banning books.
- Building heights and zoning should be under our control. Tallahassee should stay out! Vote for
Jim Blue and Protect Local Power!
I am a mother, a stepmother, grandmother of six all of them range in age from two to 9 years. I have been a resident of Sarasota County since 2015, living in a modest home in North Port since my retirement in 2016, with my two dogs; one of them a rescue. I have wanted to serve in Congress for as long as I can remember. I want my children, grandchildren, you and your loved ones to have the same rights and freedoms I had most of my adult life. With my work experience in public service, life experiences, and experience as a candidate, I have learned it and now I want to earn it – your vote. Experience is wisdom. Our Diversity is or Strength, our Unity is our Power – as Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi said in 2018. She is someone who heavily influenced my politics and gave me aspirations to learn about “the People’s House” and eventually run for the US House. Having been close to the pain so many Americans feel so often in my lifetime, I want a seat at the table. Elect me November 5, 2024 to be your U.S. Representative in Florida’s 17th Congressional District for the 119th Congress beginning in January 2025.
I ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 2022 midterms against Greg Steube. I could not let the MAGA Republican election denier run unopposed after the only Democratic candidate dropped out in February 2022. I put my second home in New York up for sale the first week of March and did not look back. Considering I was a first time candidate with little name recognition that started in March of 2022, I did well, learned a lot, and beat all other first time candidates running against a Republican incumbent in a Red leaning U.S. House district. I did not hit the ground in FL 17 until June after my house in NY sold. Then, a Category 5 Hurricane, Ian derailed my campaign September 28, 2022 with the almost total destruction of my now only home. Insurance placed me 85 miles out of the district in temporary housing with two dogs and two cats, with only 41 days until Election Day and 10 days until Vote by Mail began. After taking a little more than a year to rebuild my North Port home and visiting my family completing the road trip I took across county with my father and mother in 1973 and seeing many of the northwestern states I missed, I began my 2024 campaign on my birthday this year, October 21, 2023. I kept my promise to my Dad when I was 15; I saw America first. Now, I have time and experience on my side this campaign. However, I cannot do it alone. I need your help.
- Rebuilding the Middle Class by closing the wealth gap between the 90% and 10%.
- Protecting our Environment, Drinking Water Quality & Quantity, and Estuaries.
- Reforming Insurance
- Women’s Choice should be made by the woman, her family, and her doctors. Not Politicians!
- Safeguarding the Human Rights for LGBTQ+, Voters, Health Care, Education and “Equality for All”.
- Protect our Democracy’s Principles and Values.
- Advocating for sensible Gun Safety measures.
- Securing Social Security, Medicare, and other Social Programs.
- Increase VA and FEMA services, funding, and reduce red tape.
- Affordable Housing
- Reform Immigration Laws
- Government Reforms; Balanced Budget, Filibuster, Term Limits, Accountability and Lobbyist Influence.
Matthew Montavon spent his service-oriented career making organizations work better through improved management. He stands for a common sense – common ground approach to government.
Matt is a native of South Bend, Indiana. One of nine children, Matt graduated from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. with a degree in political science and Spanish.
Matt served for two years with the Peace Corps in Costa Rica and then worked with the Illinois Migrant Council, providing support to migrant agriculture workers and disadvantaged individuals and families.
Matt was awarded a fellowship towards obtaining a master’s degree in public administration (Indiana University – SPEA/Bloomington) while working on projects in the state.
Following graduation, Matt worked for six years in urban and regional planning and fiscal management for local, regional, and national organizations in West Virginia, Virginia, and Washington DC.
In 1991, he joined the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and moved to Rome, where he served at senior levels. He supported work addressing hunger and agricultural production until his retirement in 2017. He was called back in 2020 for an additional one-year work assignment as head of the Global Forum on Agriculture Research and Innovation.
Matt currently is the president of the Sarasota County Democratic Party’s Hispanic Caucus, and is a coordinator of the AARP Tax Aide Program in Sarasota.
Matt was a frequent visitor to southwest Florida since the mid-80s. He established his residency here in 1997. Matt is a widower, has two adult children, and is fluent in Spanish and Italian.
My family has lived in Charlotte County for over 100 years. We have seen it grow from small tents mining for minerals to a small metropolitan. My dad told stories of the original ice house. My children were born and raised here. We all love this community and feel we can help make it better
As a small business owner, I understand the needs of businesses in our area. I helped my mom establish her business, Mary G. Stewart CPA PA before moving on to website design. In September of 2023, I bought my business… 24 days before Hurricane Ian.
As as single mom, I understand the needs of families and young adults. My kids are now grown and looking for opportunties, but they are having troubles finding them here. We need to change that.
We Can Help! Contact Us.
Individuals considering running for public office as a Democrat within Charlotte County are encouraged to contact Charlotte County Democrats at (941) 764-8440 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to make their interests known and to learn what resources may be available to assist them in running their campaign. We’ll ask you questions, give you a forum to tell us what you’re all about, and hear why you want to run. We can provide more advice about the office you’re interested in including demographics, financial requirements, fundraising needs, and your general viability as a candidate. We do not endorse Democratic candidates for public office until after primary elections take place. This is a consistent practice followed by the Florida Democratic Party and its affiliated county organizations throughout the state.
Election Tuesday, November 5th 2024
In 2024, state elections will include the District 27 Florida Senate seat, and the District 75 & District 76 Florida House seats.
Election Tuesday, November 5th 2024
Charlotte County elections will include the County Commissioners in Districts 1, 3 and 5, the School Board seats in Districts 2, 3, and 5, the Supervisor of Elections, Tax Collector, Property Appraiser, and Sheriff, among others.
City of Punta Gorda
Election Tuesday, November 7th 2023
Punta Gorda will hold elections in 2023 for council members in Districts 3 and 5.
Election Tuesday, November 7th 2023
In 2024, elections will include City Council seats in Districts 1, 2, and 4.
Get to Know Your Future Constituents
As a potential candidate, we want you to be prepared to take on the challenge of running for office. If your race is at the state or federal level, we’ll encourage you to spread out to the district you’re interested in. Get behind the wheel and road-trip to all communities and rural areas where voters live and work. Become involved in issues and organizations that impact everyone. Meet people everywhere and start making connections if you haven’t already.
In addition, you should connect with Democratic Women’s Clubs and Democratic Clubs in all locations where your chosen office has an impact. Your networking efforts could also include becoming involved in civic organizations where you intend to run. Consider attending public forums, governmental meetings, and Chamber of Commerce events. Volunteer opportunities for residents are also available from both Charlotte County and the City of Punta Gorda are also great ways to get involved.
- Charlotte County Airport Authority
- Charlotte County Board of Commissioners
- Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce
- Punta Gorda Boards and Committees
- Punta Gorda City Council
US Congressional District 17 includes 10 counties in SW and Central Florida. Democratic Executive Committees can be contacted at the following links:
Local Office Information
Charlotte County Candidate Info
Important Dates: Click IMPORTANT DATES in the Candidate Quick Reference Guide here
Punta Gorda Documents