Christina Meredith, an Army National Guard soldier who draws on her own hard, early life to help children in need, the homeless and victims of human trafficking, announced she’s running for the Republican nomination for House District 17.
“Whether it’s in uniform or the state Legislature, my commitment to public service remains the same,” Meredith said in a statement Wednesday afternoon. “I’ve seen firsthand what our broken system does to children and continue to use my platform to help them break the cycle of poverty and abuse. I will fight every day for policies that give Florida’s children and families every opportunity to flourish.”
Meredith, who now lives in Jacksonville, is from St. Augustine and graduated from Nease High School. She later attended and graduated from the University of North Florida, which is at the heart of HD 17 under the redistricting plan agreed to by the Legislature and Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Her foundation, the Christina Meredith Foundation, “advocates for foster care reform, youth to receive basic necessities, health care, trauma care and education,” according to her personal website. Her campaign website wasn’t complete at the time of the announcement.
She enters a race with an established candidate. Jessica Baker, an Assistant State Attorney for the 7th Judicial Circuit, has the support of the local Fraternal Order of Police, along with U.S. Rep. John Rutherford, state Senate President Wilton Simpson, state Reps. Wyman Duggan and Jason Fischer and a stacked list of others. She also has strong connections to the administration of Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry.
Baker has around $450,000 on hand between her campaign account and her political committee. HD 17 also drew another Republican, Jordan Wells, and a Democrat, Michael Anderson. Neither Wells nor Anderson have much action in their campaign accounts so far according to the state database.