Second Update: State Rep. Franklin Sands to Run for School Board



State Rep. Franklin Sands, the former Florida House Democratic leader, announced Wednesday that he is running for the Broward County School Board.



Sands, 71, immediately began calling potential contributors.

His candidacy was first reported by yesterday.

Asked to give reasons he wants to be on the School Board, Sands said, “I want to continue to serve and try to make a difference.”

His news release announcing his candidacy is below.

The legislator would run for the countywide seat that is now held by gubernatorial appointee Katie Leach, a Republican.

But the seat is expected open next year.

Leach has decided not to run for the countywide seat. Instead she will run for member Maureen Dinnen’s smaller and more Republican Fort Lauderdale-Plantation central Broward district.

It is possible that Donna Korn, a Republican appointed to a Northwest Broward district earlier this year, would run countywide against Sands.

Now that Sands has jumped into the race, expect other Democrats considering a campaign to back away.  A legislator since 2004 who is term limited out next year, Sands has a strong network of contacts and contributors.

He currently works for state Democrats in a 2012 Get-Out-The-Vote and organizing effort.

“I would run only with the blessing of the party,” Sands said.  “And if I run, I would put all my effort and energy into it.”

The state party is keeping his role and salary quiet and off the books, which leads me to ask the question, “Why?”

State Democratic spokeswoman Brannon Jordon said, “It is the policy of the party not to release personnel information.”

The Democrat’s coordinator for Central Florida is named on their website, but I can’t find Sands anywhere.

So much for transparency! What’s the big secret?

The GOP website discovered Sands apparently received almost $14,000 in February and March from the state Democratic Party through a consulting company that is run out of his home. What happened since then and why won’t they talk about it?

Maybe it is because Sands would be getting at least $84,000 annually if the fees found continues to be paid.  He is widely rumored to be getting even more– near six figures annually.

Either figure is a lot for the beleaguered party, which might be the reason for their reticence.

Unfortunately for Sands, this could be an issue in any campaign.  However, I don’t expect him to have any substantial Democratic opposition.

Sands’ long-time campaign manager David Brown will be running this campaign.  Brown last year managed the campaign of School Board member Nora Rupert.



October 26, 2011 – For Immediate Release


“Education of our children is the cornerstone of their economic future and our state’s economic reality”, declared State Representative Franklin Sands as he announced today that he will run for the Broward County School Board countywide seat in 2012.

Sands, whose legislative district includes Weston, Sunrise, and Plantation, went on to say that “current and past state administrations have shattered a century long commitment to provide a high quality public education. This constitutional promise was to prepare Florida’s students to successfully compete for entry to college or to excel in the world-wide job market. That promise has clearly been broken.”

A former Democratic leader of Florida’s House of Representative, Sands noted that 55% of Broward graduating students who want to go on to post secondary schools need remedial courses in math, reading and/or writing.

“I believe we are not giving our children the best possible K-12 experience,” he said.

Sands also believes that unequal competition between public schools, voucher schools and charter schools is short changing our children.

“Today we compete in a global economy where average is just not good enough. We can and must do better. I look forward to being a part of that solution,” Sands said.

“When my colleagues in the Florida House elected me to serve as the Minority Leader from 2008 – 2010, I led a campaign to try to reverse the damage being done to our children’s future at the altar of “conservative budgeting,” he said.

Cutting education budgets, healthcare for children, our senior safety net and support for small businesses, while at the same time providing more tax breaks to large corporations, has now proven to be a failed economic experiment. It has not produced promised jobs or a strong state economy. Experimenting with our children’s future is just not acceptable to me.”

Rep, Sands said that he looks forward to completing his legislative service as a fighter to force our state to accept its responsibility to fully fund public education and then to work as a member of the Broward County School Board to implement sound business practices that will return our schools, teachers and support staff to the levels of pride, respect and achievement they rightfully deserve.

“Time will tell if the School Board, with its new members, can fully respond to the criticisms leveled in the recent Grand Jury Report and establish the ethical corruption free framework necessary to provide our children with a high quality education and give taxpayers renewed confidence that their tax dollars are not being wasted.”

“I entered public life after retiring from a successful business career and I want to continue serving our community and our children.” In addition to other business interests, Sands was the President of DuBarry Fifth-Avenue for, a national promotional jewelry company headquartered in New York City for many years.

Franklin Sands is married to Leslie Sands who was the Broward President of Hadassah. They have six grandchildren. All who are old enough attend Broward public schools. 

18 Responses to “Second Update: State Rep. Franklin Sands to Run for School Board”

  1. Correction says:

    Katie Leach is not quitting her current seat to run against Maureen. Resign to run has no impact here Leach will be serving out the term and when she wins the Dist 3 seat she will start that term in January anew.

  2. Give Me A Break says:

    He is a great person!

  3. DeeDee says:

    Sands has already won. No Republican can win countywide unless it is the sheriff. Leach loses. Sands wins.

  4. get a life! says:

    So Buddy, you implied Alston was too he made too much to be so young. Is Sands to old to make six figures?!

    How silly! Sands will do a great job and be a great candidate.

  5. Nick says:

    If the Florida Democratic Party paid money to Rep. Sands, it would be available in their disclosures. Go there and look.


    He doesn’t show up party or various federal D committee disclosures. I checked.

  6. Jeanne says:

    It just seems to me that we keep recycling the same people over and over again. Since the School Board race should be non-partisan, I welcome Donna Korn if she runs for the county-wide seat. She knows the job of a school board member. She is smart and insightful and some one new. ( Yes, I know she has been serving on the FTF)
    I really do think its time for something new.

  7. Git R Done says:

    what? Oh no, tell me it isn’t true?
    Why doesn’t he stay in the seat he’s already in?

  8. FDL says:

    Why don’t you mention the only candidate in the District 3 race, Michael Levinson. I assure you Correction, Ms. Leach will not be starting the term in January of 2012.

    Michael Levinson is turning the establishment on its ear. He works harder than any other candidate getting petitions every weekend. The voters loved his Pink Slip for his opponent.

    Why do you the Broward Supervisor of Elections office sends nasty threatening letters warning of fines in an attempt to cripple the campaign. It is well known that Member Dinnen is tied to felons Joe Egglshon and Ken Jeen through their campaign person Judy Stern.

    It does not matter if you dont know the name Michael Levinson you better get to know it because it will be he who gets sworn in January of 2012.

    The silent majority is back and they are tired of politics as usual in this County.

    Vote Michael Levinson on Aug 14.

  9. Correction to Correction says:

    No one will take office in January. The term starts in November 2012.

  10. career politician says:

    Mr. Sands is broke, Buddy broke te story that he got taken by Madoff. So why would Sands want a SB job for 40k a year. Health Insurance thats why. You would think his big lobbyist son Alex Heckler. could float his step daddy a dime

  11. Same old failures says:

    This is the problem with FDP, we keep running the same old people. This is why Democrats in FL are non-existent. We don’t have a bench of new talent and even if we did, the old guard refuses to give them a chance. I think the BYD, College Dems, and any Professional Dem under age 40 should bolt from the umbrella of the FDP and start creating a new Dem Party…where they are constantly recruiting and running new and young talent.

  12. Hammerhead says:

    This would be one way to restore the “old” guard. Right?

  13. @ FDL/ Frances Dorfman Levinson says:

    Yes Mrs. Levinson – we know your Michael is a good boy.

  14. Broward Resident says:

    Ah…he needs to be careful. School Board is a non-partisan race. This stuff about parties could become a problem for him in a non-partisan race especially a countywide contest.

  15. Congrats says:

    Candidate Levinson you have hit a nerve with the machine known as Maureen Dinnen/Judy Stern. Ask anyone in East Fort Lauderdale it is well known that one reason Rep. George Moraitis beat Candidate Barbra Stern so bad was because everyone was disgusted how Stern attacked his parents. The above post about your mother being accused of blogging seems very similar. Keep em on their toes Mr. Levinson

  16. Quaw says:

    So his grandkids attend public school. What about his own kids? Did this former millionaire think public schools were good enough for his own kids?

  17. Water says:

    This might sound like age discrimination but he is 71 years old. Gosure down and retire!

  18. Ghost_Paul_Giordano says:

    Will this guy have stomach to crack on high salary ($90K) that Mike Marchetti is currently making with high school diploma?