Four seats are up for grabs on the Islamorada dais in this year’s election, with current council members either running for other offices, terming out or choosing not to seek re-election. As a result, new faces will be seen come November.  

Each week, the Upper Keys Weekly will pose a question to each candidate in the race on a village issue. Candidates have the opportunity to respond to the question in 100 words or less.

For this week, the Keys Weekly’s question to council candidates is stepping away from the politics for a moment and asking a lighter question, all while learning a little more about the candidates.

If Hollywood were to produce a movie about your life in Islamorada, who would play the role of you and what would be the genre? (Answers as submitted in 150 words of less. Candidates were asked to describe the plot in 50 words or less).

SEAT 1

PETE BACHELER
Sean Connery, Hunt for Red October, in the quest for an election win leaving everyone wet, stranded, and behind.

 

FRANK LAVIN
“Vamik’s Room” is a recently released documentary about five-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee Vamik Volkan who was born on the ethnically-divided island of Cyprus, has worked a lifetime bringing enemy groups together for dialogue.  “Frank’s Place” is the story of a Village councilman from an island in the Florida Keys that has long been politically divided because of growth versus environmental concerns. Through Frank’s skills at communicating, sharing ideas and encouraging cooperation, he is able to unite a diverse community. He becomes a local hero for uniting the people of the beautiful coastal community of Islamorada and enhancing the sense of community residents share.

SEAT 2

CHERYL MEADS
If Hollywood were to produce a movie about my life in Islamorada, I would have Kathy Bates play the role of Cheryl Meads and the genre would be “American drama.” The plot would concern a 50-year-old woman and her family who move to Islamorada to hide from being persecuted for exposing corruption in an international pharmaceutical company. They fall in love with their new home and dedicate their lives to staying involved and giving back to their community. The title would be “Recompense.”  

MARK GREGG
The genre would be a feel good action adventure. It is the story of a boy from the Appalachian backwoods (played by Lucas Black) who moves to the Sunshine State, and grows up to become a successful small town lawyer. After retiring, he develops a passion for solar power that inspires him to launch a world wide renewable energy revolution that leads to the collapse of the fossil fuel industry. The story ends on a reef in the Florida Keys where he helps to sink an oil supertanker repurposed as an artificial reef for marine life lost to global warming.

SEAT 3

JENNY BELL-THOMSON
Meg Ryan. A comedy about breaking glass ceilings. Set in a small town where your successes are applauded, and everyone knows about your mistakes long before they’re published on the front page of the town newspaper. Large doses of love and laughter. “It’s supposed to be hard. The hard is what makes it great.” —  Jimmy Dugan. 

Joseph “Buddy” Pinder

BUDDY PINDER
“To Walk With Locals” is a sequel to “To Walk with Lions,” a 1999 film starring Richard Harris as George Adamson. Adamson spent his later years protecting the lions and other wildlife in the  Kora National Reserve, Kenya. He encounters poachers and government corruption blocking  his quest. In “To Walk with Locals”, Buddy Pinder, played by Tom Selleck, is dedicated to protecting the fragile ecosystem of the beloved Florida Keys. He loves the beauty and scenic  wonder of Islamorada with coral reefs and magical waters; the tropical hardwood hammocks.  Pinder works with dedicated locals to make a difference.

SEAT 5

DAVID WEBB
I appreciate the efforts of the Keys Weekly to provide continuing education for the citizens of Islamorada through the “Question of the Week.” And, I understand the motives to lighten up the atmosphere of the Village council campaigns. However, out of my sincere respect for the seriousness of casting a vote for any candidate I am declining to participate this week. I will certainly continue to answer any and all questions that any voter has in order for them to see the clear choice between David Webb and my opponent.

LARRY ZETTWOCH
“Press On!” an adventure of life and love on and under the sea, starring Kevin Costner as Larry Zettwoch. Watch the adventure unfold as Larry leaves a successful life of service as a fighter pilot and lawyer to move his young family to Islamorada. From flying high, to diving deep, Larry’s story of discovering a new way of living – serving, advocating for, and enjoying Islamorada’s wonders above and below Florida Bay and the Atlantic Ocean – is the story of so many who make the village their home. This film will inspire you to serve your community and Respect Islamorada!

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