FULL NAME: William Derek Ryan
RUNNING FOR: Orange Soil and Water Conservation District – Seat 4 (NPA)
AGE: 42 years old
FAMILY: Wife– Kristine … Son– Drew … Father– Doug Ryan … Mother– Polly Ryan
BORN: Winter Garden, Fla. Raised in Apopka.
HIGH SCHOOL: Apopka HS graduate c/o 1993
COLLEGE: Valencia College, Mid-Florida Technical School for Auto Body Repair
CURRENT PROFESSION: Commercial Landscape Maintenance Sales at OmegaScapes, Inc. in Orlando.
EMAIL DEREK: Derek@Derek4Orange.com
POLITICAL AND LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCE: After shutting his landscape and nursery businesses down due to the recession in 2008, Derek was frustrated with how government and politicians negatively affect small business owners. His interest in politics began once he discovered Ron Paul and the message of limiting government and increasing freedom. In 2012, Derek supported Libertarian Gary Johnson for President and then Adrian Wyllie for Florida Governor in 2014. During the 2016 election, he worked on presidential campaigns for Austin Petersen and then Gary Johnson as the Orange County Events Coordinator. Derek has been chairman of the Libertarian Party of Orange County, Fla. since 2016 and will continue to lead freedom loving residents in the Orlando area. He is probably best known for his political activism as a regular attendee of Orange County and City of Apopka Commission meetings, speaking often on record for important issues. Recently, he was appointed as an Associate Supervisor to the Orange Soil and Water Conservation District. Derek believes that “showing up matters” and you can trust that he will continue to do so.
HOBBIES: Derek’s biggest passions outside of being a watchdog in his community are the outdoors and his love for classic Volkswagens. He has been restoring them for over 20 years and considers himself a “Freedom-loving VW Hippy… and there are more of us than you might think.” The Florida rivers, lakes, and springs have been a love of Derek’s his whole life. Paddling the Wekiva River, Juniper Run, and Alexander Springs are a favorite pastime. “I’m a fresh water guy. I love our beaches, but I really love our lakes and springs.” Derek and his wife, Kristine, also enjoy working in their one-acre yard on Lake Heineger in Apopka.
QUOTABLE: “If I ask a room full of people, ‘Who wants to preserve natural resources in Central Florida?”, everybody will raise their hands. But it’s not that simple. There’s a lot of gray area, and that’s how my landscaping background will pay dividends. If we’re going to have regulations like two days a week watering, then we must recognize who told them to put all that landscape in the ground in the first place … government. Larger properties were told they would get a certain amount of water volume and we consistently don’t have that much on the properties we manage. Irrigation zones now have to run longer so property owners can protect their investment, and it is difficult to water a large property in the restricted times allowed. You have government creating a problem on one hand, and then government trying to solve it on the other at the expense of the property owner. If we must create regulations, then they need to make sense and be realistic … otherwise we turn perfectly good people into lawbreakers. What we need to do is address the root of the problem… government planning. I’m the Devil’s advocate in the back of the room that will raise my hand and challenge these things so we can come up with better solutions.”
KEY LINKS TO DEREK’S CAMPAIGN AND HIS STANCE ON THE ISSUES: