WUFT News

Profile: Pete Lars Johnson

By on March 6th, 2013


Leah Harding contributed audio reporting.

When it comes to creative political campaigning, you might say Gainesville mayoral hopeful Peter Lars Johnson is barking up the right tree.

If you’ve driven down West Newberry Road, you’ve probably seen Johnson’s campaign billboard featuring the candidate in a straw hat and his furry companion, Dakota, wearing sunglasses.

pete johnsonJohnson said he decided to include the 12-and-a-half-year-old golden retriever in his campaign posters as a memorial to the dog who died in March 2012.

Those unaware of Johnson and Dakota’s story can still see the humor in the campaign signs. Johnson said Dakota’s personality was reflective of why he wants to run for Gainesville’s mayor.

“He had this incredible ability to make people smile,” said Johnson. “That’s why I put him up there. I want to bring this community together. We have a good town, but we really have an opportunity to be great. ”

Johnson has spent about $7,400 in the campaign, according to the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections.

If elected mayor, Johnson said he will close the gap between the city’s residents and its elected officials by striving for transparency.

“One of my goals would be to make access to the information that concerns citizens and the city easier to obtain,” he said.

Johnson said he aims to focus on issues like the biomass plant being built, which he initially supported. As time passed, he came to question its feasibility.

“We’re going to have a power plant that, realistically, we at this time don’t have a need for,” he said.

Johnson has lived in Gainesville for 35 years and graduated from the University of Florida.

Johnson feels the university’s growth can move Gainesville from being a good college town to a great city.

“My vision for Gainesville is I’d like us to be in the top 100 metropolitan service areas,” Johnson said.

A business consultant, Johnson said his skills, if elected, could be beneficial in the decision-making process related to infrastructural funding.

Johnson, originally registered as a Republican, recently decided to join what he calls the fastest growing party in Florida.

“I became a No Party Affiliation, an NPA, which is is truly reflective of my views,” he said. “I think good ideas can come from anywhere.”


This entry was posted in Politics and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Politics

Putnam County has more dirt road miles than any other county in the state of Florida, according to Chris Evers, the past president of the American Public Works Association. Photo by WUFT.

Controversy Surrounds Better Place Plan Renewal in Putnam County

Putnam County residents will be able to vote on the renewal of the Better Place Plan on April 7. However, the wording of the renewal plan has some residents questioning the transparency of the commission and how the changes will affect the county.


District 31 Vote Here

Bill Creating Online Voting Registration Passes First Vote

Senate Bill 228 passed its first round of voting on Tuesday 7 to 2. The bill will make online voting registration possible and enable current voters to update information. If passed, the bill states online services will be available Jan. 1, 2016.


Hiram-Martinez Cabrera, Pride Awareness Month (PAM) director at the University of Florida, gives a speech during Transgender Day of Remembrance. He hopes to utilize various trans-oriented PAM events to get people engaged in lobbying against H.B. 583. Photo courtesy of Hiram Martinez-Cabrera.

Transgender ‘Bathroom Bill’ Could Invalidate Alachua County Human Rights Ordinance

A House Civil Justice Subcommittee approved a bill on March 4 that would ban transgender Floridians from using single-sex facilities that do not align with the sex listed on their driver’s licenses.


Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Pam Carpenter explains to supporters why voting results were delayed Tuesday night. Despite minor technical difficulties, the results were reported and gave some candidates the news they had been waiting for.

Gainesville City Commission Elections End In Run-Offs

The Gainesville City Commission District 1 and City Commission At-Large elections ended Tuesday night with two run-offs. The final election will be held on April 14.


Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Pam Carpenter explains to supporters why voting results were delayed Tuesday night. Despite minor technical difficulties, the results were reported and gave some candidates the news they had been waiting for.

Gainesville City Commission District 1 Candidates Talk Goals And GRU

Gainesville City Commission elections are Tuesday, and WUFT News has interviewed candidates to help voters make informed decisions. The candidates on Tuesday’s ballot shared their reasons for running and visions for the city of Gainesville.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments