As I walked around to collect signatures to get on the ballot earlier this summer, a recurring question was, “Why are you running for this? It’s a thankless job.” I’m running because I’m a true believer in the idea that local governments can accomplish great things with citizen participation. Together, we can continuously push the city’s lawmakers and agencies to deliver better service for Brookland.
As ANC commissioner, I will continue to be guided by the following principles:
To be a voice for transparency - The ANC is here to serve the neighborhood. As such, I believe all the business of the ANC should be easily accessible and searchable to anyone in the neighborhood. In my first term, I tried different methods of sharing the ANC business and settled on a newsletter. In my second term, I hope work with other commissioners build on this. As we continuing to build on our transparency efforts, I believe that we must bridge the digital divide and ensure our neighbors who are not fluent in technology also have access to the information about the ANC.
To be a voice for our neighborhood - As the ANC agency website states, “The ANCs were established to bring government closer to the people, and to bring the people close to the government.” As such, I strongly believe it would be my duty to speak truth to power on behalf of our neighborhood. I’ll aim to serve as an advocate for our single member district but also try to provide a forum where dissenting viewpoints within our neighborhood can have a conversation and ultimately reach a compromise that is in the broader interest of the neighborhood.
To be a voice for greater neighborhood involvement - Our neighborhood is a diverse place with each one of us having distinct skills and interests. Our neighborhood would greatly benefit from more neighbors by lending their skills and passion to one or two issues they deeply cared about. In my second term, I’ll continue to work to find ways to get more of our neighbors involved.
To be a voice for a neighborhood we want - By its nature the ANC is a reactionary body. It hears and tries to solve complaints from the neighborhood residents. The ANC is constantly fighting against change in the neighborhood. Ultimately, I don’t want our neighborhood to be shaped solely by the battles that we lost through this process. I want to create a space where we can proactively think about and define the future of our neighborhood. This will help shape which initiatives the ANC will stand against and serve as a roadmap for what services we will seek from the city and what businesses we want in our neighborhood.
- To be a partner to other neighborhood organizations - Over the last two years, I’ve learned that Brookland has many other organizations working hard to make our neighborhood has a voice in some of the city’s important debates. I’ve had the pleasure of working with some of these organizations and will continue to do so to advance our shared goals for the Brookland.