Francis X. Suarez

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Francis Suarez
Francis Suarez.png
Suarez in 2017
43rd Mayor of Miami
Assumed office
November 15, 2017
Preceded byTomás Regalado
Member of the Miami City Commission
from the 4th district
In office
November 2009 – November 2017
Preceded byTomás Regalado
Succeeded byManolo Reyes
Personal details
Francis Xavier Suarez

(1977-10-06) October 6, 1977 (age 43)
Miami, Florida, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
RelativesXavier Suarez (Father)
Alex Mooney (Cousin)
EducationFlorida International University (BS)
University of Florida (JD)

Francis Xavier Suarez (/swɑːˈrɛz/; born October 6, 1977) is an American attorney and politician serving as the 43rd mayor of Miami. He was elected on November 7, 2017 with 86 percent of the vote.[1] Suarez is the first Miami-born mayor. He is a registered Republican, but the office of the City of Miami Mayor is nonpartisan. He previously served as City of Miami Commissioner for District 4, a position he held since he was elected in a runoff election on November 17, 2009. Suarez is the son of former Miami Mayor and former Miami-Dade County Commissioner Xavier Suarez.

Suarez also serves as Vice-Chair of the Miami-Dade Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) and is the former President of the Miami-Dade County League of Cities. In his role at the TPO, Suarez championed the Strategic Miami Area Rapid Transit (SMART) Plan, which was unanimously approved.[2] The SMART Plan expands mass transit options in Miami-Dade County through six main corridors and new bus routes.

Early life and education[edit]

The oldest of four siblings, Suarez is the son of two-time Miami mayor Xavier Suarez. His aunt, Lala, is the mother of West Virginia United States Representative Alex Mooney.[3]

Between 6th and 8th grade, Suarez attended Belen Jesuit, an all-boys preparatory school. In high school, Suarez attended Immaculata-LaSalle High School. He graduated in 1996 and went on to graduate in the top 10% of his class from Florida International University with a bachelor's degree in Finance. Following college, Francis Suarez chose to attend the University of Florida Fredric G. Levin College of Law, receiving his J.D. degree cum laude in 2004. He is an attorney with the law firm Greenspoon Marder, specializing in corporate and real estate transactions.


Miami Commission (2009–2017)[edit]

Suarez was first elected as City of Miami Commissioner for District 4 in 2009. The general election to replace Tomás Regalado was on November 3, 2009. Suarez made it to the runoff election against Manolo Reyes after he received 44.74% of the vote, while Reyes received 40.50%. The other candidates in the general election were Denis Rod who had 5.15% and Oscar Rodriguez-Fonts with 9.61%.[4]

The runoff election was on November 17, 2009. Suarez won with 51.41% of the vote. He was reelected unopposed in 2011 and 2015.[5]

Mayor of Miami[edit]

Mayor Suarez has overseen a $400 million municipal bond initiative, sometimes called the Miami Forever Bond, to combat rising sea levels and support affordable housing.[6]

In January 2019, he told the Miami Herald that his three major themes for governance would be quality of life, a pathway to prosperity, and resiliency.[7] Suarez claimed that Miami benefitted from his leadership with a new online permitting system and a historically low homicide rate, among other things.[7]

In February 2019, he wrote an article with Ban Ki-moon about how Miami is defending itself from the effects of climate change.[8]

Suarez is a cryptocurrency-friendly politician, who has promoted the development of Miami as a cryptocurrency hub.[9]

In 2021, Suarez was included in Fortune magazine's "World's 50 Greatest Leaders" list.[10]

In 2018, Suarez voted against Republican nominee and later Governor of Florida Ron DeSantis in the 2018 Florida gubernatorial election and instead voted for his Democratic opponent Andrew Gillum for which he was criticized by fellow republicans.[11] In 2020, Suarez didn't vote for the Incumbent Republican Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election. In 2021, he was considered as a running-mate to potential 2024 candidate Nikki Haley[12]

Response to COVID-19 pandemic[edit]

On March 2, 2020, Suarez responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by announcing preparations for a potential outbreak in Miami.[13] Though no cases had yet to reported in Miami, two cases were confirmed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in other areas of the state of Florida.[13] On March 4, 2020. Suarez announced plans to cancel the upcoming Ultra Music Festival, stating that the tourists attending would greatly enhance the likelihood of Miami having cases of COVID-19.[14] On March 6, 2020, Suarez and the Miami municipal government responded to the outbreak, which by then had resulted in even more confirmed coronavirus cases in the state of Florida,[15] by cancelling the local Calle Ocho Festival as well.[16][17] Suarez and two other city officials confirmed this during a press conference.[16][17]

Suarez contracted the virus, which he confirmed during an interview with Miami Herald on March 13.[18] He was the second person confirmed to be infected in Miami-Dade County.[19] He began posting daily video diaries to Instagram, showing the progression of his COVID-19 infection.[20]

In July 2020, Suarez dedicated 39 police officers to enforce a Miami-wide mask-wearing ordinance.[21][22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Miami's new, homegrown mayor has a 'mandate' and a big agenda". David Smiley and Douglas Hanks. Miami Herald. November 7, 2017. Retrieved November 9, 2017.
  2. ^ "SMART Plan Matrix and Resolution" (PDF).
  3. ^ Van Buren, Eleanor (October 29, 2020). "Don't Throw Out Your Intern ID Badge. You May Want It When You're in Congress". Roll Call. Retrieved October 29, 2020.
  4. ^ "November 3, 2009 Municipal Elections". Miami-Dade County Elections.
  5. ^ "Miami Commissioner Suarez reelected by default; Gort faces challenger". DAVID SMILEY. Miami Herald. September 19, 2015. Retrieved November 9, 2017.
  6. ^ "Miami Launches First Phase Of $400 Million Forever Bond Program". WLRN. December 18, 2018. Retrieved January 8, 2021.
  7. ^ a b Joey Flechas (January 29, 2019). "Miami mayor enters second year with streamlined vision and political bruises". miamiherald. Retrieved January 8, 2021.
  8. ^ Ban Ki-moon and Francis Suarez (February 20, 2019). "Opinion | Miami Battles Rising Seas (Published 2019)". Retrieved January 8, 2021.
  9. ^ "Miami Pushes Crypto With Proposal to Pay Workers in Bitcoin". Bloomberg. February 25, 2021. Retrieved February 25, 2021.
  10. ^ "Francis X. Suarez". Fortune. 2021. Retrieved May 23, 2021.
  11. ^ Joey Flechas (November 9, 2018). "Voters refused to expand Miami mayor's power. He might be politically weaker now". Miami Herald.
  12. ^ Sabrina Rodriguez (April 28, 2021). "The Trump-rejecting Florida Republican who has a plan to fix the GOP". Politico.
  13. ^ a b "No Coronavirus Cases in Miami But Preparations Continue: Mayor". NBC Miami. March 2, 2020. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  14. ^ Flechas, Joey (March 4, 2020). "Ultra's March festival canceled over coronavirus fears in Miami, sources say". Miami Herald. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  15. ^ Patrick, Steve (March 5, 2020). "CDC confirms 4th coronavirus case in Florida". WJXT.
  16. ^ a b "Calle Ocho Festival Cancelled, Carnaval on the Mile to Continue Amid Coronavirus Concerns". NBC 6 South Florida. March 6, 2020. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  17. ^ a b "Calle Ocho, Ultra Music Festival cancelled amid coronavirus concerns".
  18. ^ Flechas, Joey; Leibowitz, Aaron (March 13, 2020). "Miami mayor tests positive for coronavirus after event with Bolsonaro and staffers". Miami Herald. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  19. ^ "Mayor of Miami tests positive for COVID-19 after event with Brazil president". WPTV. March 13, 2020. Retrieved March 13, 2020.
  20. ^ Francis Suarez (March 18, 2020). "Opinion | I'm the Mayor of Miami, and I Have the Coronavirus". Retrieved January 8, 2021.
  21. ^ "City Mandates Facial Coverings in Public; Civil Penalties Approved". June 25, 2020. Retrieved January 8, 2021.
  22. ^ Lisa Lerer (July 22, 2020). "Miami Mayor Wants Florida to Mask Up, Too". Retrieved January 8, 2021.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Tomás Regalado
Mayor of Miami