Friday, July 19, 2024

St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch endorses Michele Rayner for Florida State House

Representative Michele Rayner’s re-election campaign for the Florida State House has received the early backing of St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch.

“Rep. Michele Rayner has been a champion for the people of Pinellas County since well before she was elected to serve in the Florida House and I’m proud to endorse her in her re-election campaign,” said Mayor Ken Welch.

“I know she will continue her record of advocacy for the people as she continues to serve in Tallahassee. I look forward to our ongoing collaboration on issues and actions that improve the lives of all those who call Pinellas County home. With an affordable housing crisis, rising cost of living and uncertainty about the future, Floridians need a champion for the people more than ever, and Michele is that champion.” 

Mayor Welch is St. Petersburg’s first Black mayor who received early support from Representative Rayner in a competitive primary election. Rep. Rayner is no stranger to breaking barriers herself as she is the first queer Black woman to be elected to the Florida House and the only LGBTQ+ woman representative. Before filing for re-election, Rep. Rayner ended her bid for Florida’s 13th Congressional District after Governor DeSantis passed gerrymandered maps during redistricting which cut Florida’s Black Congressional representation in half.

About Michele Rayner

Michele Rayner is a Florida House State Representative running for re-election in newly created HD62 which includes parts of Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties. Born and raised in Pinellas County, Michele is a widely respected civil rights attorney and social justice advocate. Prior to joining the Florida Legislature, Rep. Rayner served as an Assistant Public Defender and Legislative Aide. Rep. Rayner earned her B.S. in Political Science and International Affairs and M.S. in International Affairs  from Florida State University and her J.D. from Florida Coastal School of Law. Prior to her election to the state house, Michele served as local counsel for the NAACP Legal Defense fund. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and the Fred G. Minnis Bar Association and the NAACP. Michele and her wife, Bianca, live in St. Petersburg, Florida with their dogs. 

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