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Karen Castor Dentel

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Karen Castor Dentel
Karen Castor Dentel.jpg
Florida House of Representatives District 30
In office
November 20, 2012-Present
Term ends
Novemebr 18, 2014
Years in position 3
Base salary$29,687/year
Per diem$131/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Term limitsN/A
High schoolChamberlain Senior High School (1986)
Bachelor'sVanderbilt University (1990)
Master'sThe University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1993)
Ph.D.University of Florida (2001)
Place of birthTampa, Florida
Campaign website
Karen Castor Dentel is a Democratic member of the Florida House of Representatives, representing District 30 since 2012.

Dentel is a teacher who has taught at four different elementary schools in Florida.[1]


  • 2001: University of Florida, Ph.D., Curriculum & Instruction, Educational Leadership
  • 1993: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, M.Ed., Literacy Studies
  • 1990: Vanderbilt University, Elementary Education
  • 1986: Chamberlain Senior High School


Campaign themes


The following excerpts come from Dentel's campaign website:[3]

Innovation: "Karen knows that the key to moving Central Florida’s economy forward is through encouraging more innovation. Central Florida is recognized as a leader in energy and medical research with opportunities for growth.... Karen will also work to maximize the public-private partnerships at the energy research hub at the University of Central Florida. She will support our universities and community colleges through investments in research and cutting-edge innovation."

Infrastructure: "...Central Florida is geographically situated to be a major gateway for the Eastern U.S. if we invest in our ports and take advantage of the widening of the Panama Canal. Expanding and dredging the Port of Tampa and Port Canaveral will make it easier for our high-tech manufacturing sector to thrive."

Workforce development: "...Having a well-trained work force in Central Florida will attract businesses that bring high-tech high-wage jobs to the area."

Women's health: "Karen believes that decisions on women’s health should be made between a woman, her family and her doctor – not politicians in Tallahassee...."

Education: "Strengthening the middle class starts with investing in our public schools...."

Middle class: "Karen believes that it is time for Tallahassee to put the focus back on the middle class. That means tax fairness and helping our small businesses here at home. The government must stop giving away handouts to special interests...."

Health care: "Karen supports the expansion of Medicaid that will provide health care to those that need it the most while saving taxpayer dollars...."

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Dentel served on no standing committees:



See also: Florida House of Representatives elections, 2012

Dentel won election in the 2012 election for Florida House of Representatives District 30. Dentel defeated unopposed in the Democratic primary on August 14, 2012, and defeated incumbent Scott Plakon (R) in the general election which took place on November 6, 2012. [4]

Florida House of Representatives, District 30, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngKaren Castor Dentel 53.1% 36,475
     Republican Scott Plakon Incumbent 46.9% 32,232
Total Votes 68,707


Dentel received endorsements from:[5]

  • Orlando Sentinel
  • The Florida Professional Fire Fighters
  • Orange County Firefighters
  • Orlando Firefighters
  • Florida Education Association (FEA)
  • Seminole Education Association
  • Orange County Classroom Teachers Association
  • Florida Nurses Association - Orlando, FL
  • Equality Florida
  • Florida Fraternal Order of Police
  • Florida Alliance for Retired Americans

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Castor Dentel is available dating back to 2012. Based on available campaign finance records, Castor Dentel raised a total of $253,274 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 28, 2013.[6]

Karen Castor Dentel's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Florida State House, District 30 Won $253,274
Grand Total Raised $253,274


Castor Dentel won election to the Florida House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Castor Dentel raised a total of $253,274.
Florida House of Representatives 2012 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Karen Castor Dentel's campaign in 2012
Florida Democratic Party$70,295
Dentel, Karen Castor$1,775
Zelman, Andrea Ellen$1,000
Florida Education Association$1,000
Clay Educational Staff Professional Association$1,000
Total Raised in 2012$253,274
Source:Follow the Money


Dentel and her husband, Eric, have two children. Her mother, Betty Castor, was a member of the Florida State Senate. Her father, Don Castor, was a judge in Hillsborough County, and her brother, Frank Castor, was elected to the bench in Palm Beach County in 2006.[1]

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Political offices
Preceded by
Ritch Workman (R)
Florida House of Representatives District 30
Succeeded by