Shaniqua "Shan" Rose
Democratic candidate, Florida House District 41
Never held elective office.
Employee, City of Orlando, 2013-2019
CEO, Change For The Community
Polk State College, B.A., Business Administration, 2015
American Public University System, Master's in Public Administration, 2018
Shaniqua “Shan” Rose, a former Orlando city planner who now heads a nonprofit community services organization, is seeking the Democratic nomination for the House District 41 seat in a crowded field to unseat incumbent Travaris McCurdy in the Aug. 23 primary.
The newly redistricted District 41 — which covers much of the area in House District 46, currently represented by McCurdy — includes a sliver of Ocoee as well as the neighborhoods of Parramore, Orlo Vista, Oak Ridge and Washington Shores — a largely African American, mostly working-class community. The winner of the Democratic primary will face the Green Party’s Robin Denise Harris in the November general election. No Republican is running in the race.
Rose, who has never held elected office, last year ran unsuccessfully for the nonpartisan Orlando City Council District 5 race, losing to Regina Hill.
On her campaign site, she advocates for economic diversity and sustainable development, increased school funding and higher teacher pay, crime reduction, greater infrastructure funding, cleaner air and water, reduction of gun violence, bail bond reform, decreasing recidivism, more reproductive rights and greater overall equality for women.
At a recent “hob nob” with candidates sponsored by the nonprofit Pine Hills Community Council, VoxPopuli’s Norine Dworkin caught up with Rose, asking her about education, school violence and abortion.
Regarding education, Rose said she wants teacher pay raise but would also incentivize local corporations in the district to donate supplies and other materials, which can be tax-deductible. With the current movement to ban books in school libraries, she added community organizations could help with offering those banned books to children and their parents.
Regarding reducing school violence, Rose said that legislators and school leaders need to look at all aspects of safety including installing metal detectors, providing state standardized training and adequate equipment for law enforcement to deal with potential situations, creating secure access points and installing warning and lock systems. Rose, who lost her husband to gun violence and is raising a child as a single parent in the Parramore neighborhood, said she would also sponsor strong anti-bullying measures, including providing counseling to those who bully and the targets of the bullies.
For six years, Rose worked in the city of Orlando’s Economic Development Department for the Downtown Development Board and Community Redevelopment Agency and then in the city’s permitting office. In 2019, she founded Change for the Community that seeks to improve neighborhoods through collaboration among organizations on issues such as homelessness, food scarcity and youth advocacy.
Rose, who is pro-choice, said women should have access to reproductive healthcare and not be forced to give birth to children that might create a financial hardship for them. She said also that the Republican-led legislature should also provide greater financial support for foster care and adoption agencies if women are forced to give birth to children they’re unable to care for.
Ruth’s List, which backs pro-choice Democratic women, and the Fraternal Order of Police both endorsed Rose. “We believe that dedication to serving the community is a beacon of inspiration to voters and we feel that Shan Rose is the best chance at a safe and prosperous future,” said FOP President Steve Zona, in a statement released by Rose’s campaign.