Progress for Florida celebrates two-for-two night in Miami-Dade local elections

The left leaning firm succeeded, though Democrats generally struggled.

Progress for Florida (P4FL) — a consulting firm aiming to support left-leaning candidates — is celebrating after scoring a pair of wins Tuesday night in Miami-Dade County Elections.

The firm worked with term-limited House Democratic Leader Kionne McGhee as he pursued a spot on the Miami-Dade County Commission. McGhee won the District 9 seat Tuesday, defeating Homestead City Council member Elvis Maldonado 54%-46%.

Public school teacher Lucia Baez-Geller, another P4FL client, won the District 3 seat on the Miami-Dade County School Board. She topped fellow teacher Russ Rywell 61%-39%.

The firm was founded in 2018 by Millie Raphael and Philip Jerez, two alumni of Andrew Gillum‘s 2018 gubernatorial campaign. They launched the firm alongside activist Laurie Schecter.

“These results make it clear that people desire elected officials who truly reflect the communities they serve,” Raphael said in a Monday statement.

“We believe in investing in those candidates and we can’t wait to see the change they are going to bring once they are sworn into office.”

The firm also did work helping Joe Biden‘s presidential bid here in Florida. President Donald Trump ultimately took the state for a second straight cycle, though Biden has been named the presumed winner of the 2020 election after wins elsewhere, including in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.

During the Primary Election, P4FL also helped Democratic Rep. Dotie Joseph secure reelection in House District 108. She emerged from a three-way primary — which included former Rep. Roy Hardemon — after earning 57% of the vote.

In a talk with Florida Politics earlier this month, Raphael made the case Florida was a blue state, but Democratic turnout was being held back by the current party operation.

Republicans certainly made the state look red Tuesday night. Though Raphael’s clients had some success, Democrats got roughed up in congressional races as well as state legislative contests.

Whether that puts a dent in Raphael’s thesis about the state, or proves her point about flaccid Democratic Party leadership, remains to be seen. The Monday statement from P4FL said the firm would be back in 2022, working on statewide races as well as the high-profile gubernatorial contest.

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected].


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn