Gillum on road to making history?
By Journey Staff Writer: Qiyah Lanier
Born to Charles and Frances Gillum, a construction worker and school bus driver, respectively. Andrew Gillum was born in Miami, Florida then later relocated in Gainesville, Florida. He graduated from Gainesville High School in 1998 and, during that year, was recognized by the Gainesville Sun as one of the city’s “Persons of the Year.” Already destined for great things he then moved to Tallahassee to attend the Illustrious Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University.
Immediately Taking initiative in leadership roles, Gillum served as President of the FAMU Student Government Association from 2001-2002, and was the first student member of FAMU Board of Trustees. He was recognized by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation as “Emerging Leader for 2003”. Really beginning to make his mark in Tallahassee, prior to the completion of his college career, Gillum was elected to the Tallahassee City Commission.
The youngest person (age 23) to ever be elected to the Tallahassee City Commission, Gillum was elected to a one-year term as city commissioner, and then subsequently reelected to a full term. During the previous decade he has initiated various ventures to generate a new economic life to Tallahassee such as; The Digital Harmony Project. The initiative championed by Gillum with support from the City of Tallahassee, local businesses and technology partnerships. The project was to provide desktop computers complete with Internet access, learning software and ongoing training and support for every incoming sixth grader at R. Frank Nims Middle School. The program was overall designed to expand Internet access to underserved parts of our community.
Gillum has also served as lead commissioner for the Long Range Community Based Target Issue Committee. After ten years as a city commissioner, Gillum kickstarted his campaign for the Tallahassee Mayor of office in 2013.
In April of 2013, Andrew Gillum announced his intention to run for Mayor of Tallahassee. Initially Gillum was set to run against three opponents; Larry Hendricks, Zach Richardson, and write-in candidate Evin Matthews. Gillum defeated Richardson and Hendricks; capturing 76 percent of the vote. Shortly after write-in candidate Evin Matthews withdrew from the race, resulting in Gillum becoming Mayor-Elect.
Since becoming Mayor Gilliam has had an remarkable impact in the Tallahassee area, and is responsible for a number of community enrichment projects during his eleven years as a city commissioner. Undoubtedly we have to give credit where credit is due.
As Andrew continuously seeks to institute mechanisms for greater transparency in operations as well as streamline the development permitting processes to enhance administrative efficiency and cost effectiveness for public private partnerships, there is no doubt he will make history as he gears up for his 2018 Office for Florida Governor campaign. Which he announced earlier this year.