3 Council 12 seats contested in Aug. 14 vote

Three incumbent members of East Kendall Community Council 12 are opposed for reelection to new four-year terms during the Aug. 14 primary as of the June 8 qualifying deadline.

Council chair Jose Garciga and four- year member Angela Vazquez, both elected in 2008, are challenged for their second terms in office while Anthony Petisco, appointed to fill the vacant Sub Area 122 seat in 2011, seeks his first elective term.

In Sub Area 126, Garciga and Falls resident Alex Duran, a licensed chiropractor, were qualified for the primary. Vazquez is challenged by Joseph Sanchez, owner of a graphic arts and printing company, in Sub Area 124.

Petisco, a financial consultant, was appointed initially to Council 12 in March 2011 by then District 7 Commissioner Carlos A. Gimenez. He was reappointed in October 2011 by District 7 Commissioner Xavier Suarez who succeeded Gimenez after his election as Miami-Dade County mayor.

Council 12 extends roughly from S. Dixie Highway (US1) to Florida’s Turnpike between SW 56th and SW 152nd streets, and on the east side of US1 includes two unincorporated areas adjacent to South Miami and Coral Gables.

Candidate backgrounds and boundaries of contested Sub Area seats include:


SW 40th Street (north); Snapper Creek Expressway/SR 878 (south); US1 (east); Shula Expressway/SR 874 (west).


A Miami-Dade resi- dent for 25 years, Matthew Larsh said he “decided to run for Miami-Dade County Community Council 12 because, “as I served our country honorably as a United States Marine, I now want to participate and serve in the community which I live.”

Born in Illinois, Larsh graduated from Miami-Dade College with an Associate in Arts degree in Computer Information Systems, and is employed at Marlow Council Abrams Adler Newman and Lewis law firm in Coral Gables as IT manager. Married for 18 years, the Larshes have one son.


“In seeking reelection, my commitment is to honor your trust, and to be the community voice,” Anthony Petisco said. “I will accurately and effectively convey your message when reviewing all items presented before the council, as I have done since first being appointed.”

Petisco, employed by Total Wealth Management (a division of TotalBank), holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from FIU and serves on the alumni board of Christopher Columbus High School. Married five years, he and his wife, Lourdes, expect the birth of a son in July.


N. Snapper Creek Dr. (north); SW 112th Street (south); Shula Expressway/SR 874 (east); SW 117th Avenue (west).


To be “involved in the betterment of my community, I would like to take an active role in assuring that our community continues to embrace the families that reside here now, as well as generations to come,” said Joe Sanchez, a native of Miami and 30-year resident.

A graduate of Ai Miami International University of Art and Design with a bachelor’s degree in Advertising and Design, Sanchez is principal/CEO of Lionsden Creative Inc., a graphics and printing studio. Active in the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Ronald McDonald House and other South Florida charities, he and his wife are parents of two sons.


“Quality of life is influenced by many things,” said Angela Vazquez, a native Miamian and a Kendall resident for 16 years. “Sometimes what seems very innocent can impact traffic, schools, look and feel of a neighbor- hood and much more.

“I want to protect the value of our homes, and I want the quality of life in Kendall to be second to none.”

A graduate of the University of Miami, Vazquez is assistant director of Southwest Social Services, directing five senior centers and a meals-on-wheels program. She has served two terms as treasurer of her homeowners association board of directors.


SW 112th Street (north); SW 152nd Street (south); US1 (east); Shula Expressway/SR 874 (west).


Ed. Note: Alex (Alejandro) Duran did not reply to emails and telephone calls to a qualifying website address and telephone contact for additional information.


“I have fought for responsible growth management initiatives while taking into account the needs of our community,” said Jorge Garciga, a graduate architect and 26-year resident of East Kendall.

“I have worked tirelessly to promote transit use, advocated in Tallahassee on behalf of the U.S. Green Building Council, supported sustainable causes throughout the district, and endorsed the continued beautification of Miami-DadeCounty.

“We must continue to fight and protect East Kendall from unwanted lobbyists looking out for their best interests,” added Garciga, a graduate of Columbus High School who holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Architecture from the FIU School of Architecture.

He is associated with a Coral Gables architectural firm.


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