Cubans in Florida - A Project of Cuban Studies Institute

Explore the Journey of Cubans in the State of Florida

Javier Souto

Javier Souto

Javier D. Souto has served as Miami-Dade County Commissioner, representing District 10 uninterruptedly since April 1993, and was most recently reelected to office in August 2014. His Commission District includes portions of Kendall, Westchester and Fontainebleau.

Currently, Commissioner Souto serves as the Chair of the Cultural Affairs & Recreation Committee, which oversees parks, libraries, museums, and cultural activities in Miami-Dade County. He is also a member of the Economic Development and Port Miami Committee, as well as the Vice Chair of the Health and Social Services Committee.

Commissioner Souto was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in November 1984 and was reelected in 1986. In the Florida House he served on the Appropriations; Finance and Taxation, Judiciary; Criminal Justice; and Higher Education Committees, and was part of the Republican leadership.

Souto was elected to the State Senate in 1988 and re-elected in 1990, serving as Senator until the completion of his mandate in 1992. In the Senate, he chaired a Sub Committee of the Finance and Taxation Committee, as well as served as Vice Chair of the Agricultural Committee and Vice Chair of the Reapportionment Committee. He was also a member of the International Trade and Tourism Committee, the Natural Resources Committee, the Health Committee, the Joint Legislative Auditing Committee, and Chairman of the Personnel, Retirement and Collective Bargaining Committee.

Commissioner Souto was born in Sancti Spiritus, Cuba, on December 15, 1938. In Cuba, he attended La Salle Elementary School in Sancti Spiritus, and La Salle High School in Havana (graduated 1956). After that he attended Villanova University (in Havana), and the University of Havana. In the U.S.A. he attended Miami-Dade College and the University of Miami, where he graduated from the School of Business in 1967.

Commissioner Souto is a veteran of the Bay of Pigs Invasion (a founding member, #2504) where he was active in the Infiltration Teams. He served for several years, after the Bay of Pigs, with the CIA (Miami office). He is also a Realtor. For almost 25 years he worked for Burroughs Wellcome Co., now GlaxoSmithKline, in Marketing, Sales and Management. He is retired from that pharmaceutical firm.

Commissioner Souto has maintained a close relationship with the community through appointments to various organizations. He served on the Board of Directors for the Child Abuse Prevention Program of South Florida and the Alliance for the Aging, Miami High School and Braddock High School, and was also a member of the Dade County Civil Defense, the Lions, Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs. He was Vice President of the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association. He was also one of the two Commissioners representing the County in the Public Health Trust, appointed by the Chair of the BCC and serving for over 10 years.

Commissioner Souto is married to Berta Cepero. They have three adult children: Javier, Laura, and Frank, as well as eight grandchildren: Cristina, Alina, Brock, Amanda, Astrid, Natalie, Nicole and Lauren. Commissioner Souto and his wife have lived in the Westchester area of Miami-Dade County for the past 45 years, interrupted only by his participation in the Bay of Pigs invasion. Commissioner Souto arrived in Dade County from Cuba on March 25, 1960, and has lived in Miami ever since.

Shopping Basket