In West Palm, this downtown issue will shape the next local election

City Commissioners Shanon Materio and Sylvia Moffett have fielded competitors in their race for re-election in March, a race that will no doubt be overshadowed by the drive to shape West Palm Beach’s growth and waterfront height limits.

In Moffett’s race, real estate executive Kelly Shoaf has jumped in to seek the District 1 seat.

Shoaf is vice president of purchasing for Chatham Lodging Trust, a hotel real estate investment trust. She’s secretary of the Old Northwood Neighborhood Association, a board member of West Palm 100 and on the planning committee for the Marathon of the Palm Beaches. A West Palm Beach resident for a dozen years, she has a degree in business and marketing from the University of Pittsburgh and an MBA from the University of Florida.

WEST PALM READERS: Sign up for the Post’s West Palm weekly newsletter

Moffett was one of three commissioners who voted against Related Cos.’ plan to rezone the Okeechobee Boulevard corridor and allow a 25-story office tower in a 5-story waterfront zone. Shoaf said she has not formulated an opinion on the issue, the most contentious in the city this year, which could come up again if elections create a commission more sympathetic to the developer.

“My background as a business executive, my experience in volunteering in our city and my desire to see change has inspired me to run,” Shoaf said in announcing her run last week.

There’s also a third candidate in that race, Pastor Martina Tate Walker, who ran unsuccessfully last time around.

According to filings with the city clerk, Moffett has loaned her campaign account $500, its only contribution. Neither Shoaf nor Walker have recorded any contributions.

READ: Plan for downtown West Palm micro apartments is scrapped

Materio, another key vote in the 3-2 decision against Related’s tower, is far ahead of her competitor in fund raising for the District 3 seat. Materio raised $37,700, as of Sept. 30.

Her competitor, Christina Lambert, had no contributions listed.

Lambert is a productivity strategist who works with CEOs and other professionals to improve their business practices. She is former CEO of the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County and executive director of Leadership Palm Beach County.

“I am running for city commission to bring effective and innovative leadership,” she said. “As a Hispanic woman, I will bring diversity and a renewed energy to the city commission to ensure our city is planning for the future.”

READ: City’s Flagler bike lanes project gets plenty of flack from residents

In District 5, City Commissioner Paula Ryan is unopposed but has the fullest campaign coffer of anyone running in the city, $40,985. “That’s absolutely the way you scare away a competitor,” she said, but added that she hasn’t held fund-raising events recently.

A Ryan fund-raiser in April was hosted in part by Related’s land use lawyer, Harvey Oyer III and Chamber of Commerce CEO Dennis Grady, a prominent supporter of the project, as well as many chamber officials.

Ryan, a real estate developer, voted for the Related rezoning plan for Okeechobee Boulevard, as a way to address larger growth issues in the city, she said.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Local

John Legend blames Trump for government shutdown, calls him racist
John Legend blames Trump for government shutdown, calls him racist

Grammy and Oscar-winning singer John Legend is claiming that President Donald Trump and his team’s alleged racism are behind the government shutdown. Legend, who has vocally criticized Trump Sr. and Jr. both in the past, tweeted the following just after midnight Saturday: “The reason the government shutdown is that Trump...
Three fun things happening in Lake Worth
Three fun things happening in Lake Worth

1. Art Meets Jazz on J Street Exhibition in Gallery, through Feb. 6, Clay Glass Metal Stone Gallery, 15 South J Street.Check out Jazz on J Street inspired photography, sketch art, fine and mixed media artwork. 2. Paint Your Wagon, Lake Worth Playhouse, 713, Lake Avenue. In California in May 1853, Ben Rumson strikes gold and establishes...
Hop on over to Lake Worth Beach’s Bonfire on Friday
Hop on over to Lake Worth Beach’s Bonfire on Friday

The Lake Worth Beach Bonfire started in 1997 as a low-key event, attended mostly by locals. The event has certainly changed over the years. “Now it has grown in not only size, but popularity,” said Lauren Bennett, Lake Worth’s Assistant Leisure Services Director. “Not only are we the only beach in the county that hosts bonfires...
Lake Worth nixes woman’s plan to turn property into hotel, music, bar
Lake Worth nixes woman’s plan to turn property into hotel, music, bar

Mary Sisoian went before Lake Worth’s City Commission this past week with a request. She wanted to rezone her site at 18 S. Palmway Drive, property records show she bought for $525,000 in 2005, from medium density multi-family residential to downtown. On Oct. 4, the city’s Planning and Zoning Board approved Sisoian running a bed and breakfast...
JUST IN: 12-year-old boy shot in Boynton Beach
JUST IN: 12-year-old boy shot in Boynton Beach

Boynton Beach Police are investigating after a 12-year-old boy was injured in a shooting at the 1000 block of Northwest Fourth Street. Witnesses told authorities that a gold or tan SUV pulled to the front of the Cherry Hill Mini Market around 2:45 p.m. Three men exited the car and allegedly started shooting at unknown men standing in the area...
More Stories