My vision for St. Louis Park is shaped by what I've learned
during my 25 years of service to our community.
Click + to learn more about my positions:
I believe the core responsibility of an elected official is to listen to, respect, and respond to all constituents. You can count on me to reply to your phone calls and emails, be genuinely interested in your concerns and ideas, and follow through on things I say I'll do.
Part of what makes St. Louis Park great is our socioeconomic diversity, made possible by the diversity of our housing stock. Without being proactive, we risk losing longtime residents including families and seniors. To ensure a range of housing options remains available, I support the adoption of measures including:
Redevelopment is a valued source of property and sales tax revenue for our city. Redevelopment also impacts our quality of life, through increased traffic and congestion, environmental impacts, potential loss of affordable rent for residents and small businesses, and threats to the cohesiveness and character of our community. I support the development of a comprehensive design plan for our city that:
I believe that providing community-wide education regarding implicit bias is critical to understanding and dismantling structural racism. Many communities, school districts, and institutions across the country are waking up to the fact that our ways of thinking about and making decisions reinforce structural racism and perpetuate racial disparities, including in St. Louis Park. I applaud the current council’s commitment to advancing racial equity and am committed to moving that work forward if elected. I strongly support the council's efforts to make decisions through a lens of racial equity, meaning we explore who benefits from facilities, programs, and policies in order to ensure our shared community resources are being distributed equitably. We also need to create pathways to leadership by removing barriers to people of color engaging on a neighborhood level, in our schools, and on boards and commissions.
Through my professional work as a nonprofit consultant for equity-focused organizations and initiatives, I bring knowledge of equity strategies being implemented in other communities and look forward to exploring what will work here in SLP. I would also like our city to partner more closely with the school district on this issue, so that we can support and strengthen each other's efforts on a community-wide level.
closer City-school partnership
I believe our city and our school district can partner more closely to maximize resources available to students. Specifically, I'm in support of:
protecting the environment
I applaud our city’s success in implementing programs to protect the environment, such as organics recycling, the zero-waste packaging ordinance, and collaborations with local businesses to reduce CO2 emissions. I also support our city's environmental stewardship goals, which include:
I'd like our city to explore ways to mitigate property tax burdens on older homeowners with fixed incomes, to ensure they can stay in their homes when the value of those homes is increasing quickly. I'd also like us to explore:
Ward 1 residents are eager for more neighborhood gathering spaces like Parkway Pizza, Yum!, and Vitale's Bistro. I support the use of city-owned commercial property for this purpose, as well the purchase of privately owned commercial property, when available, with the goal to create more locally owned places for people to gather. I also support the city issuing Requests for Proposals (RFPs) for gathering spaces like coffee shops and cafes, when land is being redeveloped, and declining offers from large developers to create businesses that don't align with community members' goals and priorities. With work on our 10-year Comprehensive Plan currently underway, now is the time for residents to engage on topics related to development, redevelopment and historic preservation. I believe we can and should be more proactive in how we allow land to be redeveloped in our community.
I also support
ward 1 issues
ranked choice voting
I support the implementation of Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) in St. Louis Park. RCV fosters a more inclusive, participatory, and representative democracy. Particularly in light of the recent elimination of municipal primary elections in St. Louis Park, implementing RCV is critical to ensure majority support for the winning candidates. I also believe it is the responsibility of the city council to implement this change and hope the charter commission makes a recommendation to council soon to do so. Click here for more information on RCV.
I would like our city council to create a commission focused on supporting and affirming LGBTQ people in SLP, similar to our other commissions. I'd also like our staff and council to participate in training to become skilled at using gender-neutral language when talking with and about residents at council meetings and in other public settings. I'd like all of our public buildings to have gender neutral or single stall bathrooms, and for our city to be proactive in affirming trans people in all aspects of community life. This includes ensuring our registration forms, program brochures, and other publications are inclusive and affirming regarding gender as well as having affirming literature, artwork and other "daily life" aspects of interacting with our city be inclusive and affirming of members of the LGBTQ community.
Minnetonka Boulevard (County Road 5) is dangerous to cross at intersections throughout Ward 1. I support our city being far more proactive than we have been to date in working with Hennepin County to make crossing Minnetonka Boulevard safer. This may include the installation of traditional stoplights or HAWK pedestrian crossing beacons, narrowing roads, widening sidewalks, installing grassy medians, and other safety measures. We may need to invest our own resources, rather than wait for the county, to move this priority forward.
Increased property taxes are a concern for a residents at all income levels in St. Louis Park. I expect our city government to be fiscally responsible and believe there are areas where we can spend less and still provide great city services. I support the current council's decision to increase the pay scale for our excellent city staff, even if it means an increase in taxes. As we begin to see tax revenue from expiring TIF (tax increment financing) agreements such as Excelsior & Grand, I'd like us to apply at least a portion of that revenue toward tax relief, and reinvest in expensive new projects only if there is broad community support.
5 things I love about St. Louis Park
1. The people
The people I know who live in SLP are generous, community-oriented, down-to-earth, and diverse.
2. Our schools
SLP schools are welcoming places where every student matters.
3. Our high level of civic engagement
SLP consistently invites citizen input, and residents consistently provide it.
4. Our commitment to healthy living
From organics recycling to promoting walking and biking, SLP is creating opportunities for residents to live healthier lives.
5. My neighborhood!
Like most St. Louis Park neighborhoods, the Birchwood neighborhood, where I live, is organized and receives grant funding from the city for events & activities. Living in an organized neighborhood adds to the quality of life for me, my family, and my neighbors every day.