Conversations: June 19, 2020
On this episode of Miami Corona Project Conversations, mayoral candidate Alex Penelas joined artist Xavier Cortada in discussing the impact coronavirus has had on Miami. They examine the crisis from multiple intersections including how it has affected the tourism industry, exposed shortcomings in public transportation, and emphasized inequalities within our communities. Penelas explains what he would do differently as County Mayor to lead us through these trying times from his experience dealing with crises like Hurricane Andrew and 9/11 and says, “the only way we can recover is to recover together.”
About Alex Penelas
Alex Penelas began his public service as a council member of the City of Hialeah in 1987, two years after graduating from the University of Miami School of Law. In 1990, Penelas became the youngest person ever elected to the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners, where he led the charge to create the Commission on Ethics and Public Trust. Six years later, he ran and was elected Miami-Dade’s first Executive Mayor for two terms from 1996 to 2004.
During his tenure as a public servant, he led initiatives for funding the expansion of public transit, establishing universal Pre-K, designing gun control legislation, reducing property taxes for senior citizens, creating the Homeless Trust, and more. After 15 years out of public office, Penelas is now in the running for Miami-Dade’s mayoral seat for the second time.
Alex Penelas, the son of two Cuban immigrants, has been married to Lilliam for 26 years. They have three children, William, Christopher, and Alexandra Maria whom they are raising in Miami-Dade County in Miami Lakes.