Written by Arsalan Barmand, National Iranian American Council (NIAC)
Miami, FL - The first thing Farid Khavari PhD, a proud Iranian American running for Governor of Florida, would tell you is that he is not a politician: he is an economist.
In a recent interview with NIAC, Farid spoke passionately about how the dire state of the US economy has motivated him to run for office. "Spending is outrageous, jobs are being lost, 3.7 million Floridians have lost their health insurance, 1 million people are going to be out on the street because of foreclosures," he stated with concern. "I love this country. I'm going to live here in Florida until I die. I am running for governor to change this situation."
Running as a Democrat, Farid has garnered support from across the aisle as well, which he attributes to the fact that his platform and policies do not adhere to one political party but to all Americans. He has created the Khavari Economic Plan, which calls for the establishment of the "Bank of the State of Florida." This state bank will cut spending and taxes while simultaneously providing more services, which will allow Floridians to re-build their economy in a more secure, prosperous fashion. The end goal is to create wealth for Floridians - not the "fat cats" on Wall Street.
Born in Yazd, Iran, Farid grew up in India, where his parents helped establish Baha'i communities. His father was instrumental in purchasing the property of the Lotus Temple, which is seen as India's second great splendor after the Taj Mahal.
He returned to Yazd in 1952 to complete his studies before travelling north to the village of Liavole Oliya as an educator. He taught 60 students of all different ages how to read and write, and even helped the villagers build a school, maintain proper sanitation and secure clean water.
In 1964, Farid left Iran for Germany where he received his PhD in economics and political science and met his Dutch wife, Louise. Arriving in Miami in 1977, he dove head-first into the emerging market of alternative energies, specifically solar energy. Life was moving along smoothly when two tragic incidents occurred: first, Louise was killed in medical malpractice, and a year later, Farid's father was executed by the new government in Tehran for refusing to renounce his Baha'i faith. But Farid stresses that he does not carry a grudge against anybody - these events are part of life.
Farid's solar energy business continued successfully into the mid-1980s when he decided to move in a different direction, to writing about the economy and alternative energies. "Even so, I still have commitment to 'solarizing' Florida," he states. Creating a culture and environment for alternative energies to flourish is one part of the larger Khavari Economic Plan.
A perfect example of NIAC's mission, Farid is dedicated to promoting Iranian-American participation in civic life. "I want the path of the Iranian Americans to be open and prosperous. The children of Persia were born with 2,500 years of culture and history which far outdate the current realities of the Middle East. Our community is a team, and it is important that we move forward. We must strive to participate in American civic life and show our compatriots the truth about Iranians - we are a peaceful and intelligent people who work hard for a more prosperous America."
Khavari's message is simple, "The state of the economy is not a liberal or conservative issue, it's not a black or white, male or female problem. It's an American problem. And I have an American solution."
Farid lives in Miami with his wife, Janilla, who is from Shiraz. They have a son, Armin, who attends Florida International University in Miami, and a daughter, Bianca, who attends the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. To find out more about Khavari, visit www.khavariforgovernor.com.
... Payvand News - 12/04/09 ... --