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.

Biden - Harris 2024

Together, we can finish the job for the American people. Juntos Podemos Terminar el trabajo que empezamos Para el pueblo Estadounidense
Learn More | Jim-Blue-Petition.pdf

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

Jim’s Platform:

  • 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!|

Tony Dunbar, a long-time member and board member of the Englewood Democratic Club, has announced his candidacy for the Florida House of Representatives for District 75, which includes large portions of Sarasota and Charlotte Counties.


  • Restore local decision making—stop Tallahassee’s meddling in our local issues
  • Restore a womens rights to determine her own health care
  • Bring affordable housing to young and working people
  • Prioritize enviroment over out-of-control development
  • Make insurance affordable again
  • Restore civility and common sense to our government | Manny-Lopez-Petition.pdf

Born in Key West, a 3rd generation Key West “Conch” of Cuban decent. A Disabled Veteran. Graduated from Baylor University at 40 years old. Living in Sarasota County for 20 years. Issues at the Forefront of My Agenda:
  • 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.
Extensive Working Class and Blue Collar Experiences (see website) Executive & Political Experience – School Board Member, Executive Director of Chamber of Commerce, District Executive of Boy Scouts, Executive Board of Central Texas Economic Development District, Chairman of Hill County Extension Service, President Young Democrats, Spearheaded and Chaired County-wide Issues Convention with 21 Task Forces. My extensive and diverse background in life, coupled with my commitment to public service, positions me to be a strong congressman for you. I have a unique perspective and a deep empathy for the people I aim to represent with compassion and care. I will endeavor to help the people of District 17 work towards achieving their American Dream. A Representative for the people. Vote Manny Lopez for Congress. Website: | Matthew-Montavon-Petition.pdf

Matthew Picture of Matthew MontavonMontavon 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. | Lisa-Baird-Commissioner5-Petition.pdf

My Picture of Lisa Baird, running for Charlotte County FL Commissioner, Seat 5family 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.

Sue Hill Petition

As an experienced geologist working with the military and helping to clean-up environmental damage, I am well-versed in the environmental implications of doing nothing.

I am passionate about helping our producers grow more while protecting our environment and minimizing environmentally destructive industries (such as mining) in our community.

As a local producer, I can often be found on my farm in Punta Gorda, FL. Much of the food I produce is donated to families in need.  

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 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.


State Offices

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.

County Offices

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. 

Networking Opportunities:

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

Punta Gorda Election Information

Charlotte County Candidate Info
Getting Started

Important Dates: Click IMPORTANT DATES in the Candidate Quick Reference Guide here

Forms and Information
Find City of Punta Gorda Qualifying procedures and a full list of required documents for your candidacy here.

Punta Gorda  Documents
District Maps

Signage Ordinance

Past Election Results

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