Mark Harper, Daytona Beach News-Journal
From Volusia County Medical Society
Three new U.S. House District 6 candidates emerged Tuesday: Democrats John N. Upchurch and Dr. Stephen Sevigny and Republican Michael Waltz.
Upchurch, a lawyer and owner of Odyssey Travel, Ormond Beach, moved to the area from St. Augustine at age 2 and has lived and worked in Volusia County for much of his life, including a stint as a lifeguard.
"I really do think that we need an advocate for this area, somebody who has grown up here and cares deeply about this area," he said. "I really want to be a unifier of the community and take that to Washington."
He intends to advocate for the environment, seniors, higher-paying jobs and a better national discourse.
"President Trump has set a very bad example with the way he's treating women. I want to stand up to that," Upchurch said.
Sevigny, a resident of Ormond Beach, has lived in the area for 18 years.
He is a mammographer and a partner in Radiology Associates Imaging, has been medical director of Twin Lakes Imaging Center since 2005 and has privileges at Halifax Hospital in Daytona Beach. Sevigny, who grew up in Sarasota, has also served on the board of Reunion Bank of Florida and is a director of The National Bank of Commerce in Birmingham, Alabama.
In a news release, he said his financial-sector experience should help him "right-size regulations to allow small businesses to thrive while not allowing Wall Street executives to make risky bets with our money."
And he's also concerned with improving health care. In a short interview Tuesday, Sevigny said: "As I watch C-SPAN, what I've noticed is people are focused on taking away health care. Costs are what we need to work on."
Sevigny and Upchurch will challenge Nancy Soderberg for the Democratic nomination in the Aug. 28 primary.
Waltz, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and St. Augustine businessman, did not respond to a call or text messages Tuesday. He made his announcement on "FOX & Friends."
He joins Fred Costello and John Ward among others in the Republican field.
"I think that as a combat veteran, as a Green Beret, as a businessman, and as somebody who's teed up decisions to a president when I served for Vice President (Dick) Cheney, I feel called and compelled to bring all of those experiences to the table and serve the people of Florida and serve the people of this great country," Waltz said.
Waltz served in Afghanistan and Africa before building a business, Metis Solutions Corp., which he said has grown from two employees to 400. He served as Cheney's senior adviser for South Asia and counterterrorism, according to his corporate bio. He has been a FOX News contributor and is author of "Warrior Diplomat: A Green Beret's Battles from Washington to Afghanistan."
The district, which includes all of Volusia and Flagler counties, plus parts of St. Johns and Lake counties, is represented by Ron DeSantis, who's announced a bid for Florida governor.