By Selene Raj
Jodie-Ann Wright, a Tamarac resident for the past two years, loves the wholesomeness that the city exudes, the diversity, and the parks.
As a woman whose career has been focused on social work and maternal health and a wife and a mother of five, she understands the importance of community in raising families. It’s part of the reason she hopes to be the next District 3 Tamarac City Commissioner.
A student at Broward College, pursuing a degree in social work, Wright previously worked for Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies, and Family Central Inc., as a case manager. She now operates an online retail store.
Wright and her husband, Randy McLean live in Santa Monica Townhomes in Tamarac, where they rent a home and raise their children, Taylor, 13, Chelsea, 9, Ella, 6, Shiloh, 3, and Jonathan, 2.
Wright is in a three-way race for the seat against incumbent Commissioner Julie Fishman, and former mayoral candidate and real estate agent Elvin Villalobos.
When asked what sets her apart from them, she said it is her transparency.
“I am open, honest, and upfront—not just about issues that are dear to me, but on a grand scale,” Wright said.
Her mission is to make all voices heard, irrespective of anything that poses itself as a barrier.
Wright, 34, was born in Kingston, Jamaica, and raised by parents who taught her to value faith, discipline, morals, and empathy.
“My upbringing afforded me the opportunity to have a first-hand understanding of the value of hard work. I feel now more than ever that our community needs a leader who not just goes to work, but do what is needed to get the job done.”
What motivated her to run was the overwhelming desire to offer herself in service of her community with all the uncertainties going on in our world.
Wright recognized that Tamarac, along with the rest of the country, has gone through a tumultuous and stressful time, not just with the pandemic, but with the movement demanding change and equality for all.
“I am determined, as your future commissioner, to welcome and advocate that change. Let’s find a new normal that works for all and excludes none,” she said.
Despite the turbulent times, Wright sees a silver lining in the cohesiveness that has resulted during this time—people working together, wearing masks to protect each other, social distancing, and ensuring children’s safety as they start a new school year.
She believes the continuation of this compassion and empathy is the only way forward to achieve cohesion as a community.
As a commissioner, she would prioritize building that togetherness and offering more supplemental life skills education through the city.
Since moving to Tamarac, Wright said that during this time, she had the chance to witness the way the commission works.
“There needs to be more composure in expressing themselves to and about each other,” said Wright.
She said that while her leadership style would be rooted in strength, it would also be pliable— and understands the importance of listening and accommodating people’s needs and desires without losing who she is at her core.
As commissioner, she would champion a community that allows the children in it to feel valued.
“Being of Jamaican descent, it is important to me that my children grow up in a place where they feel valued, they feel equal, and most importantly, represented and heard,” she said.
And she truly believes that Tamarac best represents that.
Wright believes children are the future and the foundation the community rests on—and she will champion programs that teach life skills, kindness, self-esteem, respect, equality, and stress management to children throughout the city, at a nominal cost.
Her name will be on the ballot on the November 3 general election, along with her opponents, but she hopes that residents choose hers that day.
“I am prepared, committed, and dedicated to serving my community as the next commissioner for District 3,” she said.
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- Selene Raj is a writer and a Florida International University graduate. Born in Trinidad and raised in America, she completed her Master's in Mass Communications in 2020, and has been living in Coral Springs since 2004. She is passionate about the communities she lives and works in and loves reporting and sharing stories that are as complex and meaningful as the people who live in them.
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