Editor's Note: Voters of municipal elections on March 12 will decide several positions in Crestview and Laurel Hill city governments.
To help readers make informed decisions at the polls, the News Bulletin will publish profiles of each candidate running for office in each edition of the newspaper through March 2. Today, we profile three candidates running for Crestview City Council's Precinct 1 position.
Each candidate was asked to answer the same questions and received the same amount of space to respond. Candidates appear alphabetically.
Personal: Wife Jackie, two children, three stepchildren. Member of Woodlawn Baptist Church, where he volunteers teaching an adult co-ed Sunday school class and serves as deacon. Has served as a member of Gideon's International Ministry for the last 28 years.
Relevant experience: A retired commercial construction onsite project manager for 50-plus years. As a resident, businessperson and property owner for more than 50 years, I feel that I am uniquely qualified to fill this position. Working in the commercial construction industry, I have experience working with a vast number of city, county, state and federal officials over the years. Being recently retired, I feel that I have the time and experience to make a difference for the citizens of Crestview.
Other education/experience: Unanswered.
Reason you seek this position: The trying economic times we are facing demand someone who is in touch with the community and understands its needs.
My goal — and reason for seeking this council seat position — is to restore trust and confidence in our elected and appointed leaders. As your city council representative, I will serve you by passionately advocating for your needs and ensure that our neighborhood is fully represented on the Crestview City Council.
With your trust and support, we can make this vision a reality.
Biggest issue this position faces and how you plan to address it: Restoring trust and confidence in our elected and appointed leaders.
LANDRUM "LANNY" EDWARDS
Personal: Married to Winnie Edwards; two children.
Relevant experience: I am a citizen of the city of Crestview. I spent four years in the Navy. I retired from civil service at Eglin Air Force Base. I have been a business owner for over 20 years in the city of Crestview.
Other education/experience: High school civil services and management courses.
Reason you seek this position: I have a strong desire to serve the city of Crestview and its citizens without any hidden agenda.
Biggest issue this position faces and how you plan to address it: I hope to stop the wasteful spending that is going on in the Crestview area — spending that does not benefit the people of Crestview.
I will work on getting a bypass around the city of Crestview, even if I have to walk to Tallahassee and talk to the representatives and the governor.
I will work on improving the downtown parking for the city of Crestview.
BENJAMIN J. IANNUCCI III
Personal: I am a single father raising two children: son, Benjamin J. Iannucci IV, and daughter, Natalia J. Iannucci. I hold a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Engineering, and a Master of Aeronautical Science and begin my Doctorate of Business Administration in October 2013. I belong to the Boy Scouts of America and serve as a Tiger Cub Den Leader for Den 5, Pack 799 in Crestview.
I am the city representative to the Military Sustainability Partnership Executive Committee, Okaloosa Economic Development Council, Northwest Florida League of Cities, and the Okaloosa Library Cooperative. I also am a member of the Professional Inspired Leaders of Tomorrow, the Military Affairs Committee, and serve on the Florida State Energy and Environmental Quality Legislative Committee, and the Federal Action Strike Team.
I am a passionate athlete, participate in many athletic competitions, and am a coach at various youth and adult sports activity events, including Crestview City T-ball/baseball.
In 2012, I launched my business, Iannucci 3.0 Inc., in which I teach leadership development, teambuilding, strategic planning, soft skills training, life development, coaching, corporate leadership consulting, and athletic consulting.
Relevant experience: Led successful effort to reduce taxes in the city, and was elected City Council president for my results. Led countless teams in military and civilian jobs, managed $200M+ projects, and built my own business in leadership development.
Most importantly, I bring integrity to the role. I will say what I believe to be correct. I always keep my head up; always push forward and I will succeed because I live my life and do my job with integrity, character and passion.
Other education/experience: I spent three budget cycles on the council where I have lowered taxes — the first time in over 20 years. I have developed long-term projects and goals that increase jobs, services and revenue, which will lower taxes even further by bringing a large retail center in 2013. Spearheading effort to build a sports complex within the city. I solidified the passing of the business incubator program, bringing small business to our downtown area.
Reason you seek this position: Crestview is my home, I’m raising a family here, and built my business here. I am excited by the future of Crestview and I want to continue to play an active role in shaping that shining future.
Every decision I make, every action brought before me I decide what I truly feel is best for the city, not for me.
I have been told that I’m the youngest member to serve, and that I’m a voice of reason as we grow. I believe in accountability for a person’s actions, including my own. I bring what this council has not had in many years: leadership.
Biggest issue this position faces and how you plan to address it: My top priority is planning. I have already begun developing processes that will allow this city to operate more efficiently both financially and operationally.
In the past, this city has had no forward-thinking leadership and operated without oversight or uniform direction. There has never been any strategic planning until I came on board and starting working with the rest of the city council.
We put together a prudent and accountable planning process for all our expenditures, for all of our projects, and for the basic operations and future planning that will in turn allow the city to lower taxes as we operate with improved efficiency.
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.