Richard Gonzales Bio
I am Richard Gonzales, and I am a candidate for Lakeland Commissioner.
Why I seek to serve as Commissioner: I am not a career politician, nor do I have any aspirations to be one. I am simply a citizen who believes leaders should set a positive example for others. I am one who believes Lakeland can grow without putting our citizens in financial distress. I also believe in order to progress, we should not compromise the quality of public safety nor education.
Who I am: A strong supporter of education, I am a graduate of Wooddale High School in Memphis and graduated with honors from the University of Tennessee at Martin. While at U.T.M., I participated in the university’s Army ROTC program and received my commission as Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Signal Corps upon graduation. I had many challenging assignments while on active duty. I am particularly proud of my service as a Communications Platoon leader in A Battery, 1st Battalion 81st Field Artillery (Pershing) – Federal Republic of Germany 1978 –1981. I was responsible for the communications personnel and equipment in a nuclear missile unit valued at one million dollars. I also performed the duties as part of a two person Emergency Action Message Team directly responsible for the security and ultimately the release of nuclear missiles in time of war. After eight years of active duty, I served in the U.S. Army Reserve. My last reserve position was an instructor in the Reserve Component of the U.S Army Command and General Staff College. I retired from the Army Reserve in 2005, with 28 years of service reaching the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. In 2014, I was appointed by Governor Haslam to the Great War Commission, a statewide group charged with commemorating Tennessee’s contributions to the First World War.
After leaving Army active duty, I spent 30 years in the building maintenance and facilities services industry. During my career in the industry, I worked through three changes in corporate ownership, and managed a business portfolio valued at $500,000.00 per month at times. In 2008, I was promoted to the position of Regional Manager over the Memphis office of Kimco Services Corporation, working in this position until my retirement in December 2015.
My lovely wife of 25 years is the former Carol Judkins, also of Memphis. I am a proud father a two and the grandfather of five. A lover of trains, I am actively involved in the “Casey Jones High Railers,” a local model railroading group. In addition, I currently serve as the Treasurer of the Casey Jones Chapter of Train Collectors Association. I am Vice President of the Evergreen Hills Home Owners Association, an organization I have been a member of since the developer turned over control of our HOA to the neighborhood.
As you can see, I have experience serving the public in various leadership roles, and I am ready to serve ALL citizens of Lakeland as your Commissioner!
Mike Cunningham, Michael Green, and I are the only team that can bring positive change to our great city, and we respectfully ask for your vote on November 6.
If you would like to contact me to discuss your thoughts or ideas, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 901.335.3948.