Elections for Oakland Park City Commission concluded last night, November 3rd, 2020. While final results need to be certified, initial results show that the following three candidates are poised to be the City’s next Commissioners: Aisha Gordon, Mitch Rosenwald and incumbent Matthew Sparks.
Living In Oakland Park had an unofficial poll which fingered two of the three winners: Rosenwald and Sparks. The third commissioner was anyone’s guess. It turned out that Aisha Gordon, not only was the clear third winner, she was also the overall winner of the election garnering more votes than any other candidate.
The final results of the election were:
- Aisha Gordon – 6, 335
- Mitch Rosenwald – 5,917
- Matthew Sparks – 5,883
- Grecia Rivas-Smith – 4,928
- Steve Arnst – 4,381
- Robert Thompson – 3,383
- Scott Herman – 2,576
Upstanding Members of Our Community
Since the candidates were confirmed in June campaigning activities intensified. However, their contributions to Oakland Park began long before the campaigning. Gordon, Rosenwald and Sparks have all been visible and active members of the community making important contributions for years.
Gordon was endorsed by the Metro-Broward Fire Fighters and Paramedics.
Gordon, a 15 year resident of Oakland Park, comes to the City Commission with a wealth of experience. She has an MBA in business management, has been the president of her community’s association for 16 years and has years of experience managing various real estate portfolios. She has proven experience in overseeing budgets, infrastructure, facilities, roads, and maintenance. Gordon has participated in various community activities. During the quarantine she joined up with several other leading community members and was integral in making sure that 36 families had a memorable Easter.
While this will be Rosenwald’s first term as a Commissioner, he is a very active member of the Oakland Park community. Born in Maryland, Rosenwald made Florida his home in 2007. Rosenwald has his doctorate degree in Social Work and is currently a professor at Barry University. During our Meet the Candidates interview with Rosenwald we asked him why he chose Social Work as a career. He answered: “I got into the field because I really care about people and more recently I’ve really focused on how I can help my community”. Rosenwald is the president of the Corals Neighborhood Association and also a member of Kiwanis Club, although his work and involvement in the community goes beyond these two organizations. Now as a City Commissioner I am sure we will see him even more.
Our current Mayor, Matthew Sparks, is originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma although he spent his formative years in Santa Cruz, California. Sparks has been a flight attendant for over 20 years. In 1999, when the company he worked for was purchased by American Airlines, he was told to pick a city. He chose Miami and within 6 months of moving here made Broward County his home. Sparks has been a resident in Oakland Park since 2015. He believes that to be a good leader, it is necessary to listen to people and to always be willing to learn new things: “There as lot of things you learn along the way. (…) No matter how many years you put in, you are still learning“. More recently, Sparks was an outspoken proponent of the re-opening of the dog park. He is also an active member of our Living in Oakland Park Facebook group, interacting with and frequently answering residents questions directly.
Swearing In on November 18th
These Commission members will be sworn in on November 18th along with Vice Mayor Jane Bolin that will be sworn in as Mayor, and Commissioner Michael Carn who will be sworn in as Vice Mayor.