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Ms. Gelzer has over 38 years of providing fiscal management services to local businesses and individuals.  She is the president and CEO of a fiscal management consultant company that services community-based agencies.   For the last 38 years, Ms. Gelzer has served as the Co-owner of Peabo Childcare Center located in the Parramore Community.


Gelzer has been a community visionary as demonstrated by her involvement with more than 30 organizations.  Gelzer has worked with community groups such as the Coalition of 100 Black Women - Central Florida, League of Women Voters of Orange County, Tangelo Park YMCA, Orlando's Community Development Neighborhood Improvement Corporation, and the Mayor's Dr. Martin Luther King Commission to help improve the lives of many of City of Orlando residents.  


Gelzer's Accomplishments


  • CEO, Community Equity Project, Inc.

  • TV Host, APEX Urban News

  • President, Coalition of 100 Black Women - Central FL

  • President, National Action Network Central FL Chapter

  • Member, National Minority AIDS Council

  • Member, League of Women Voters of Orange County

  • Member, Florida Climate Action Network

  • Community Organizer, Fight Back Coalition

  • Development Coordinator,  Express Youth Foundation

  • Board Member , Historical Black College & Universities Scholarship Foundation

  • Past CEO, HIV/AIDS Services Provider (OPEN Center)

  • Past Vice President, Southwest Orlando Jaycees

  • Past  Member,  Mayor's Dr. Martin Luther King Commission 

  • Past  Member, Orlando Growth Management Planning

  • Past Board Member, Tangelo Park YMCA

  • Task Force Member, Teen Age Pregnancy Prevention (TAPP)

  • Organizer , Kid Against Crime National Night Out

  • Task Force , Orlando Growth Management Planning



Gelzer's platform calls for solid measures to encourage Climate & Environmental Justice, Safe Neighborhoods & Communities, Affordable Housing for Working People, Youth & Senior Programs, Livable Wage Initiative and Transportation in the 5th District. Corruption and the pursuit of privilege by government officials is an overarching concern to Lawanna Gelzer. 


In 1989, Ms. Gelzer founded the Express Youth Foundation for at-risk area teenage girls.  By providing programs that enhanced teen-age community involvement and character development, not one girl became pregnant as a teen.   These programs included the Callahan Cheerleaders and Dancers.  These groups competed in and won many statewide and national championships.


In 1998, she spearheaded efforts in Orlando’s African American community to fund outreach services for HIV infected and affected individuals.  Under her leadership, the Open Center provided case management, peer counseling, housing, nutritional counseling, food services and transportation.  The Open Center was well known in the community for its many outreach efforts, which included many health awareness seminars and workshops.


In addition of her leadership of the Open Center, Ms. Gelzer served on the Florida Black Aids Network (FBAN), as the Vice President of Finance.  Here, she managed the budgetary processes that were required by the many grantors.  She targeted and identified many new grant sources that were recommended to the Network.


Lawanna’s many community activities include her service on boards and committees where she fought steadfastly for funding for many of the impoverished communities within our county.  To this day, Gelzer remains an outspoken advocate for community improvement at all levels.

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