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Devin Pandy discusses run for Gainesville City Council

By Hamilton Keener Anchor / Reporter
Posted 7:30PM on Monday 25th March 2024 ( 2 weeks ago )

Devin Pandy announced on Mar. 5 his candidacy for the vacant Ward 4 Gainesville City Council seat in a May 21 special election, and he recently spoke with AccessWDUN about his decision to run.

Pandy served in the U.S. Army for 21 years and wanted to serve his community back home after he retired. He currently volunteers with multiple area organizations. 

“I followed after my father and my older brother's footsteps, and my mother's footsteps as well, she wasn't in the military, but she served her community faithfully,” Pandy said. “I sit on a number of boards, and I volunteer, all over the place. That volunteership has led me to see that there are ways that these organizations ... can be supported by the governments whose residents they serve. And so I just figured it's a natural step to move ... seeing what there is that we can do as a council to make the lives of the residents of Gainesville better.”

Pandy explained how he would like to help residents if elected. 

“Well, first will be to serve as an example, as something that people can look up to. I am Afro-Latino, with a touch of British and Irish. So I have a wealth of cultures running within my veins, and I try to identify with those cultures, with the cultures that make me who I am, as much as possible,” Pandy said. “And so being such a diverse person, I definitely look at the world and Gainesville, in a diverse way. So having my input on the council, I believe, could open the eyes of our leaders to some of the issues that they may not be aware of, or that they may not know, are as serious as it is.”

Pandy expressed his admiration for the late Ward 4 Councilman George Wangemann. Wangemann resigned late in 2023, prior to his passing early in 2024. 

“George was amazing. I almost hesitate to say was, because his influence still affects my life,” Pandy said. “I use this acronym a lot that we learned in the military. The acronym that I speak of, spells out L.D.R.S.H.I.P. And that acronym stands for loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage. And my interactions with George, from the time we first met years ago, until we got close last summer. Everything he did lived up to the leadership acronym and he just wasn't even trying to be a role model. He just was.” 

Judy Wangemann, wife of Councilman Wangemann, recently announced her husband’s posthumous endorsement of Pandy for City Council. 

"Amidst our grief, it is crucial for the people to know that George, even in his final moments, was thinking about the future of Gainesville," Wangemann said. "His endorsement of Devin Pandy reflects his deep trust and confidence in Devin's ability to lead with the same dedication and compassion that defined George's service to our community. George had written a heartfelt letter of endorsement, a testament to his commitment, but unfortunately, he passed away before it could be published."

If elected to the city council he would like to address the housing situation and provide assistance to neglected areas of the city. 

“I want to look at housing availability and housing affordability,” Pandy said. “I want to be there to offer my assistance to make sure that some of the areas within Gainesville that have been neglected for a number of years and that have been blighted - I would like to ensure that those areas are looked at, through a serious lens, by the city and in conjunction with the county in some instances, to ensure that we are taking care of every inch of Gainsville. I take serving the community seriously, just as seriously as I took serving the country. Putting me in a situation, like being a council member where I can actually not only give the residents of Gainesville and the residents of Ward four a seat at the table. But because I have been in the community and I know what's going on in the community, I can also give them a voice in the conversation.”

Pandy said if he is elected he will hold town halls for residents to express their feelings on issues. 

To learn more about Pandy or to get in contact with him visit his website devinpandy.com.

Pandy faces opponent Abigail Guzman in the race. Guzman owns Consuelo and Pristine Clean. She is a wife and mother of two. She has served as a WomenSource Board Member and as a member of the Gainesville City School System PTA Board. 

Devin Pandy

http://accesswdun.com/article/2024/3/1234587/devin-pandy-discusses-run-for-gainesville-city-council

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