KISSIMMEE, Fla., May 1, 2014 – Eight residents have submitted applications to fill a vacancy on the Kissimmee Utility Authority board of directors. The deadline for completed applications was April 30.
The current director, Jeanne Van Meter, has completed a partial term on the board and is eligible for reappointment. She filled the position in 2011 following the resignation and subsequent death of director Jim Kasper.
Applicants must be registered voters, reside within KUA’s service territory and should demonstrate a successful business or professional management career.
The applicants are:
– MARUF AHMED is owner of Aadore International, a wholesale giftware company based in Kissimmee. He has been a Kissimmee resident for 15 years and holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Dhaka in Bangladesh.
– SANDRA ARMSTRONG is a retired marketing and advertising executive and a two-year resident of Kissimmee. She holds a marketing degree from Houston Community College and a psychology degree from the University of Houston.
– ESTHER DAACK is an entertainment manager at Walt Disney World and a 12-year resident of Osceola County. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Pacific University in Portland, Ore.
– OLGA GONZALEZ is president of the Church and Community Assistance Program and a 14-year resident of Kissimmee. She is president of the Morgan Point Property Owners Association and holds an Associate of Arts degree from Bronx Community College.
– GUILLERMO “BILL” HANSEN is publisher and editor of El Osceola Star newspaper. He currently serves on the Valencia College Board of Trustees, the Osceola Tourist Development Council and the board of the Kissimmee/Osceola County Chamber of Commerce. He is a 22-year resident of Osceola County and holds degrees from Croydon Technical College and London Tourism College in England.
– JAMES MANSON is a retired hotel and travel executive and an 11-year resident of Osceola County. He holds a certificate from the Quaker City Business School in Philadelphia, Pa.
– MANUEL SANTIAGO, ESQ. is a retired superior court judge and a two-year resident of Osceola County. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Puerto Rico and a law degree from the Inter American University School of Law. He is a retired U.S. Army chaplain.
– JEANNE VAN METER is a 41-year resident of Kissimmee and a retired realtor. She is a former Kissimmee City Commissioner, and previously served on the boards of Valencia College, Greater Orlando Aviation Authority and the Kissimmee/Osceola County Chamber of Commerce. Van Meter is a past chair of Help Now of Osceola.
The KUA board will interview the applicants at the end of its regular meeting on May 7. The board will send three recommended applicants to the Kissimmee City Commission for second interviews and final appointment on May 20. The candidate appointed by the city commission will be sworn in at the board’s October meeting.
Founded in 1901, KUA (www.kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility powering 64,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.
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Chris M. Gent