By Anne Geggis
Simeon Brier’s lifelong love of all things Parkland became even fiercer after the shooting at his alma mater moved the city onto the national stage. So now the attorney who has lived here since the age of nine is running for city commission.
The married father of two girls is the second person to announce his candidacy for the District 1 commission seat. On Saturday, Alex Zand, 21, threw his hat into the ring. The seat is now open after Stacy Kagan announced she was running for mayor.
Brier, 45, says he doesn’t want to sit on the sidelines and assume what makes Parkland great — recreational facilities, youth activities, and green spaces — will go on without his help.
“The way in which this city, the community, our children and our public servants (at every level) have come together over the last two years after facing a horrible tragedy (and now a global pandemic) has been inspiring,” said Brier, who practices business litigation with Cozen O’Connor, a national law firm with offices in South Florida.
“If people who love Parkland want to see it continue in the same way, they should also be involved in making sure we can navigate the changes ahead and preserve all the things we love about the city.”
Brier met his wife, Theresa, in a leadership class at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. After his 1993 graduation, he went on to graduate from Florida State University in Tallahassee, but then came back to the area as a Goodwin Fellow at the Shepard Broad College of Law at Nova Southeastern University.
He and his wife, MSD Class of ’94, have two daughters, Angelina, a newly minted MSD grad, and Gianna, who will graduate from the high school in 2022.
He said that volunteer coaching for his daughters and nephews’ Parkland soccer, little league, flag football, basketball, Redhawks Lacrosse, and other activities had added a great deal to his life and his family’s.
“It teaches our kids many valuable lessons,” Brier said. “It’s where the parents and players forge so many relationships and friendships with other parents and players.”
A lot has changed, however, since his family moved to Cypress Head, one of the first subdivisions in Parkland. At that time, U.S. 441 was the only way in and out of town, and the city had its own police force.
“I love Parkland, the community, the people, and all that we have to offer,” he said.
He serves on the city’s Community Advisory Board, the board of the Parkland Chamber of Commerce, and he’s also the chairman of the Board of Directors for the SOS Children’s Villages-Florida, where foster children are cared for.
He could be part of an entirely new set of faces sitting at the commission dais. Jordan Isrow is running for the District 2 commission seat that was vacated when Commissioner Rich Walker announced he was running for mayor.
District 4 Commissioner Robert Mayersohn faces challenger Robert Brannen and District 3 Commissioner Kenneth Cutler could also face challengers as both their current terms end in November.
Parkland commissioners earn a package of $45,268. This includes car allowance, health care, and a phone allowance in addition to a $32,735 salary.
The dates for qualifying to be on the ballot have not yet been announced.
Brier said he has worked hard to make a difference for the city as a community leader.
“I am running for city commissioner to build on that work and preserve the special character of our city.”
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- Anne Geggis has been a newspaper reporter for 30 years, most recently at the Sun-Sentinel. She graduated from St. Michael’s College in Colchester, Vt., with a double major in journalism and sociology.
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