Don Gaetz is a known name in American, politics. He is a politician and a former member of a Republican Party and represented parts of Northwest Florida including Okaloosa, Walton, Washington, Holmes, Jackson, and Bay counties. He was a member of the Florida State Senate from 2006 to 2016 and was a Senate President from the year 2012 to 2014.
Don Gaetz is a retired co-founder of palliative care that comforts patients and their families and also puts importance on the nobility of people who face terminal illness. The hospice care is called VITAS Healthcare Corp. He has also been the president of the National Hospice Organization.
His Early Life
Don Gaetz was born on January 22, 1948, in Rugby, North Dakota. He was born to Jerry Gaetz, who was the former mayor of the city and a state legislator. Jerry was a member of the Lieutenant Governor of North Dakota, in such a meeting in 1964, Jerry suffered and died from a heart attack. When little Don was watching television coverage of the same event.
Don graduated from the Evangelical Lutheran-affiliated Concordia College and received a bachelor’s degree in religion and political science. After completing his education in Master of Public Administration, in 1978 he moved to the state of Florida. He worked as a hospital administrator there and he helped the needy and dying people, he worked and understood the working process of the hospice care programs. In 1983, he found his own healthcare center named VITAS Healthcare Corporation with a group of investors. Later in 2004, he sold the corporation for nearly half a billion dollars.
His involvement with Okaloosa Country School
In 1994, Don received the Republican nomination in Okaloosa Country School Board. He competed against the School Board Member Jean Long, the Democratic nominee, and Susan Matuska and a Libertarian nominee, in the general election. He won the election by receiving 69% of the total votes. Meanwhile, Long got 20% votes and Matuska got 11% votes.
During his early rule, he gave funds to construct and renovate schools and received appreciation and it favored him in the 1995 election.
In 1997, he also held an investigation in his son’s school after he heard that the vice principal of the school promoted his own religious beliefs while working at the school, but the case closed after the vice-principal gave reasons about his doings and revealed he got death threats.
In the 1998 re-election, he competed with the only Republican candidate James Campbell and won the election with 67% of the total votes.
His role as Florida Senate
After the state Senator Charlie Clary’s rule got terminated due to term limits, in 2006 Don stood in the election and also won it without any opposition after State Representative Holly Benson stepped back from the nomination. His ruling places got expanded from Pensacola to Panama City, including parts of southern Bay County, Escambia County, Okaloosa County, Santa Rosa County, and Walton County.
Gaetz was the Chairman of the Senate Education Committee in his first year. He got a lot of attention after attacking a Florida Department of Education official. He also sponsored legislation that helped in the encouragement of social studies, determination of state standards, and offered honors diplomas to high-achieving students. He also won in 2010 election and the Republican nomination without any opposition.
Don was the President of the Florida Senate from 2012 to 2014. The National Rifle Association gave him a 100% rating.
His Healthcare under the law
In 2013, a lawsuit has been filed against VITAS by the United States Department of Justice. They accused the corporation of committing Medicare fraud in 2002. Though, Don denied being a part of any wrongdoings or encouraging fraud. The case settled in 2018, January confidentially. Presently, his son Matt Gaetz is a member of the United States House of Representatives.
Net worth of Don Gaetz
He is the seventh person to represent Northwest Florida District 4 since 1933. His family consists of his wife, Victoria Quertermous, and two children. He is also known as the father of famous politician, Matt Gaetz.
According to financial disclosure, his net worth is nearly $25 million.