Make us your home page

Bay Buzz

The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Chris Latvala weighs House race in 2014

It may not be long before there's another Latvala in Tallahassee.

Chris Latvala, son of Republican State Sen. Jack Latvala, said on Wednesday that he is thinking of running for State Rep. Ed Hooper's seat in 2014. Hooper, who has held the District 67 seat covering much of Clearwater and Largo since 2006, is barred from seeking re-election because of term limits.

With Hooper's seat up for grabs, two Republican candidates have already filed to replace him — Christopher Shepard and Frederick Thomson. Latvala said he would not make a decision on whether to enter the race until after this summer.

The 31-year-old is the vice president of his father's printing business, which makes signs for political campaigns. He has been involved in politics ever since he graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2004 and began working on campaigns. In 2011, he became the political director of the Pinellas County Republican Party.

Latvala has close ties to Hooper, who is not only his father's long-time friend and client, but is also his former boss. Between 2006 and 2009, Latvala was Hooper's legislative aid.

"Political campaigns are rough," he said when asked what concerns he is weighing in deciding whether to run.

"It's do I want to go through the campaign and do I want to serve the residents of District 67 and do I think I would do a good job of it," he said.

Looking at his Facebook page, it appears the only person who hasn't assumed he is running is him. On Monday, he posted a new picture of himself wearing a shirt and suit jacket.

"That would be a great picture to use on a mail piece next year," wrote one commenter.

"Candidate photo shoot?" guessed another.

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 8, 2013 6:16pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours