At a Special Meeting held on January 26, the Winter Park Town Council appointed their newest council member to fill the seat vacated by long-time Councilor Chris Seemann at the end of 2020. Filling the seventh council seat through the remainder of Seeman’s term, which will end in April 2022, is Rebecca Kaufman.
Kaufman brings her experience as a small business owner, a Winter Park resident of 12 years, and committed community service advocate to council. The co-owner of Ullrs Tavern and Wake N’ Bacon in Winter Park, she says she finds great joy in working with both her staff and residents. Being an owner of two local businesses in the area, she’s been very involved with her customers’ concerns about the community and the sizable demographic that comes along with it.
Kaufman has always had a strong interest in community government and development. It became even more apparent when the pandemic hit in March of 2020. As news spread of businesses struggling to stay open across the US, including hers, she quickly got involved. Kaufman aided the community, offering guidance on how to apply and receive unemployment benefits and assisting fellow businesses in understanding how to apply for federal and local funding. Additionally, she offered recommendations to Grand County Public Health’s variance program on how to stay operational during COVID-19. She rallied together local business owners, encouraging them to reach out to county commissioners to discuss their businesses’ urgent needs. Her efforts resulted in financial funding to the Grand Foundation’s Small Business Assistance Fund.
When the fires made their way to the valley, Kaufman’s ties and connections within the community provided support for the first responders managing the fires. With the help of local restaurants, owners and volunteers, her team distributed more than 5,000 meals to volunteer firefighters, the National Guard and more first responders. This response to the community generated direct funding of $35,000 to local restaurants and secured donated meals and saved Grand County $25,000 in meal costs.
Kaufman has shown incredible dedication to the community of Winter Park, where she hopes to continue cultivating the well-being of residents and businesses alike.
“I am honored and so thankful for the opportunity to serve on the Winter Park Town Council. I’m inspired by the work the Town Council and Town Staff have completed to this date. I am humbled at the opportunity to serve a community that has given me so much and excited and ready to get to work and help in any way possible,” said Kaufman.
Kaufman was sworn in and took her oath at the February 2, 2021 regular meeting.