Torrie Jasuwan lands 2 more endorsements for St. Pete City Council bid
Image via Torrie Jasuwan

Torrie Jasuwan
Jasuwan is building a coalition for former City Council members.

Torrie Jasuwan is building support in her bid for St. Petersburg City Council in District 5, as she seeks to make incumbent Deborah Figgs-Sanders a one-term board member.

The latest endorsers include former St. Pete City Council member Jay Lasita, who served in the late ’90s and early 2000s, and more recent former Council member Jim Kennedy.

“I am thrilled to have the support from two more pillars of the St. Pete political community,” Jasuwan said of the latest nods. “Council member Lasita had a unique ability to foster cordiality and consensus on the City Council, which we desperately need today. Council member Kennedy’s environmental stewardship on seagrass restoration efforts inspires me, especially as we have suffered critical losses in the past few years.”

She said she hopes to consult with Kennedy “on how to best protect our shorelines and water quality,” which she said are “critical to our Bay ecosystem.”

District 5 covers parts of south St. Pete, including Greater Pinellas Point, Maximo and Lakewood Estates.

Jasuwan has amassed myriad endorsements from predecessors on the dais, including former City Council members Jamie Bennett, Jeff Danner, Bill Dudley, Kathleen Ford, Karl Nurse, Darden Rice and Larry Williams. She also secured support from Treasure Island Mayor Tyler Payne and former St. Pete Mayor Bob Ulrich.

The latest endorsements bring the number of former Council members supporting Jasuwan to nine.

“I am humbled by the strong support of so many friends from our city to help us get our message to the voters of St. Petersburg,” Jasuwan said. “I am energized by the support from so many different people and diverse groups throughout our city. This early support of esteemed community leaders and money lead will help us spread a message of unity, progress and fresh ideas for St. Pete.”

Jasuwan’s reference to money refers to her campaign finance activity. She raised more than $31,000 in less than four weeks as a candidate. As of the end of December Jasuwan had raised more than $50,000, $10,000 more than Figgs-Sanders.

While Jasuwan is collecting support from former City Council members, Figgs-Sanders is looking more at the present, or at least not so distant past. She has nods from Sen. Darryl Rouson, Reps. Michele Rayner and Lindsay Cross, former Reps. Ben Diamond, Ed Narain, Jennifer Webb and Sean Shaw, and former St. Pete Mayor Bill Foster.

A Pinellas County native, Jasuwan is a small-business owner and real estate broker with Luxe properties International. She’s also the founder of Babycycle Diaper Bank, a nonprofit that serves more than 250,000 families in need each year. She has been a vocal advocate at the state level for tax-free diapers, successfully working with Sen. Lauren Book and Rep. Anna Eskamani to eliminate the tax in Florida.

Jasuwan and a business partner, Jeanette Secor, also recently oversaw the remodeling and rebranding of Two Mermaids Resort in Treasure Island.

She and her family have also appeared several times, over two seasons, on the Bravo reality series “Below Deck.”

Her husband, Albert Jasuwan, owns JAS Engineering and Construction, a local home renovation and lifting company.

Jasuwan is a registered Democrat, though her husband is a Republican, according to the most recent L2 voter data. Figgs-Sanders is also a Democrat.

Though City Council races are statutorily nonpartisan, political affiliation often creeps into debates, even if unspoken. District 5, which includes parts of South St. Pete including Maximo and Greater Pinellas Point, is heavily Democratic. As of August, Democrats in the district outnumber Republicans 13,128 voters to 5,067, with just under 5,500 no-party voters.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected].


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