Keystone Heights decides: Deirdre Murphy wants Keystone Heights to maintain is small-town feel

By Bruce Hope bruce@opcfla.com
Posted 3/3/21

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS – Deirdre Murphy loves Keystone Heights. She loves its small-town charm and its small-town feel. She loves being able to walk into the grocery store and feel like everyone knows …

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Keystone Heights decides: Deirdre Murphy wants Keystone Heights to maintain is small-town feel

Posted

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS – Deirdre Murphy loves Keystone Heights. She loves its small-town charm and its small-town feel. She loves being able to walk into the grocery store and feel like everyone knows each other’s names. That’s why she is running for Seat 3 on the city council.

“I want to preserve our quality of life here,” said Murphy. “That’s everything from – you know – engaging all the partners that help with our lakes, to keep that going. Business, obviously, as a real estate agent, I am very pro-business. I just want to preserve our way of life, our small-town charm.”

Murphy is originally from Mission Viejo, California, but moved to Florida by way of marriage. She first moved to Gainesville about 29 years ago but eventually moved to Keystone Heights 15 years ago.

This election cycle is Murphy’s first foray into politics.

“I have not [run before],” Murphy replied when asked if she had been on the city council before. “’ I’m kind of dipping my toe in the pool. I’ve never run for any kind of public office anywhere every.”

When she first moved to Keystone Heights, Murphy purchased a foreclosed home that needed a lot of work. As she worked to get it to the condition she wanted, she became involved with city groups. She discovered that her home was a heritage house in the city. She and her neighbor formed a city commission and was appointed by the city council to work on the city’s heritage commission.

“That sort of began my involvement with the community,” she said. “From there, I sort of fixed up the yard, and from there, the garden club started coming to my house asking if I would join the club and also be nominated for the yard of the month.”

Her involvement with Heritage and Garden Club led to being a part of the community redevelopment advisory board. She became chairperson of that and continued to work for the city on multiple fronts. That work led to Keystone winning the CRA Board award for the state of Florida.

“I can see that the growth in Keystone Heights is exponential,” said Murphy. “We are just getting busier and busier. I want to preserve our way of life here. I want to be able to make the decisions that allow how we go forward as a community.”

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