Above all I’m an activist and an organizer. I’ve worked all around to Lansing to increase civic engagement, advocate on behalf of green energy locally, and create a more equitable and engaged city.
I’ve worked on a dozen different political campaigns; some were for great candidates, others not so much. I’ve seen firsthand that when we give people the real power, we tend to make the correct moves.
I believe that education, strong parks and recreation, and responsible government spending make cities great. I also believe that we have all the right pieces to create a Lansing that reflects its people; we deserve that much.
But we also need action. Our schools used to be the model for large cities. We’ve allowed them to continuously deteriorate. We need to create a Master Plan that tracks demographics in our schools and surveys the families that decide to leave the school system. But most importantly, I think we need to create a Youth Caucus within our public schools that work in tangent with City Council and the school board. We NEED to empower youth and give them every tool possible to fight for their city.
Some of our most beloved parks have been carpeted with steel and concrete. Green spaces are fundamental in creating a great city. We need parks to be places for kids and families to go to when they’re done with school. We need parks to bring communities together as a hub of planning and activity. We need strong parks. And we need to band together to tell the city that we won’t touch a single blade of grass in another one of our parks.
And of course we need responsible government spending. I’m worried about the direction that we’re heading in. For far too long we’ve prioritized downtown and Michigan Avenue over our neighborhoods and working families. We need to re-prioritize funding and resources back into our neighborhoods; stronger community centers, no more lost schools, no more lost parks.