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Mayor Suarez’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Why the telegenic mayor of Miami shouldn’t have gotten out of bed. It has to do with Ken Griffin.

First, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez woke up to headlines blaring the fact that he failed to qualify for tomorrow’s 2024 Republican presidential debate. (The cutoff is based on polling and fundraising thresholds.) That exclusion is especially notable given that North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum (who?) managed to make the cut. Quite an achievement since the entire state of North Dakota doesn’t even have twice the population of the city of Miami.

And a ton of the mayor’s fintech and VC buds just moved to Miami—plus Miami is in a swoon over Lionel Messi, who probably couldn’t find North Dakota on a map. Couldn’t Suarez, the only Latino in the race, leverage enough of that good will to get onto that Milwaukee debate stage? Even raffling off Inter-Miami tickets to donors didn’t seem to help.

Mayor Suarez has previously said that any candidate who doesn’t qualify for the debate should drop out of the race.

Life comes at you fast.

To add injury to insult, now the suntanned mayor is mired in yet another scandal: The Miami Herald reports that an ethics complaint was filed against Suarez for accepting VIP access to various high-profile events, including 2022’s Formula One and the mayor’s trip to Qatar during the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The most recent: the 2023 Formula One race, which the mayor attended at the invitation of Citadel billionaire Ken Griffin, who recently relocated Citadel’s headquarters from Chicago to Miami. Suarez also attended a dinner at Griffin’s invitation the night before the race.

Though both Suarez—who is prohibited from taking any gifts worth over $100 from lobbyists or companies that send lobbyists to City Hall—and Griffin insist that the mayor covered his costs (and Griffin wrote a letter to the Miami Herald stating such), no paperwork to back up that claim has materialized. The Florida Commission on Ethics is reviewing the complaint.

This is not the first time that Suarez’s ethics have been scrutinized: As a consultant, he accepted $170,000 from developer Rishi Kapoor, who had business before City Hall, which prompted an FBI investigation. 

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Drew Limsky

Drew Limsky

Editor-in-Chief

BIOGRAPHY

Drew Limsky joined Lifestyle Media Group in August 2020 as Editor-in-Chief of South Florida Business & Wealth. His first issue of SFBW, October 2020, heralded a reimagined structure, with new content categories and a slew of fresh visual themes. “As sort of a cross between Forbes and Robb Report, with a dash of GQ and Vogue,” Limsky says, “SFBW reflects South Florida’s increasingly sophisticated and dynamic business and cultural landscape.”

Limsky, an avid traveler, swimmer and film buff who holds a law degree and Ph.D. from New York University, likes to say, “I’m a doctor, but I can’t operate—except on your brand.” He wrote his dissertation on the nonfiction work of Joan Didion. Prior to that, Limsky received his B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Emory University and earned his M.A. in literature at American University in connection with a Masters Scholar Award fellowship.

Limsky came to SFBW at the apex of a storied career in journalism and publishing that includes six previous lead editorial roles, including for some of the world’s best-known brands. He served as global editor-in-chief of Lexus magazine, founding editor-in-chief of custom lifestyle magazines for Cadillac and Holland America Line, and was the founding editor-in-chief of Modern Luxury Interiors South Florida. He also was the executive editor for B2B magazines for Acura and Honda Financial Services, and he served as travel editor for Conde Nast. Magazines under Limsky’s editorship have garnered more than 75 industry awards.

He has also written for many of the country’s top newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Boston Globe, USA Today, Worth, Robb Report, Afar, Time Out New York, National Geographic Traveler, Men’s Journal, Ritz-Carlton, Elite Traveler, Florida Design, Metropolis and Architectural Digest Mexico. His other clients have included Four Seasons, Acqualina Resort & Residences, Yahoo!, American Airlines, Wynn, Douglas Elliman and Corcoran. As an adjunct assistant professor, Limsky has taught journalism, film and creative writing at the City University of New York, Pace University, American University and other colleges.