I am committed to the prosperity and growth of Bartlesville. Four years ago, I was elected to the Bartlesville City Council on the need to significantly improve the quality of life in Bartlesville. Since then and with historic community support we have added amenities that have greatly improved the quality of life landscape in Bartlesville forever. Together we: Built the Tower Center at Unity Square, improved the Price Fields, renovated the entrance to Kiddie Park, repaved and repaired miles of pathfinder, added new playgrounds, funded two splash pads, and new pavilion and improvements to Douglas Park, created a Cricket field, built a new skateboard park, added bike lanes in the downtown area. We have also supported and grown our local and downtown businesses, secured long term water rights for Bartlesville, provided support and properly funded our police and fire departments, worked to assure efficient spending of our capital dollars, provided responsible fiscal management with limited city revenues.
I am a previous City Councilor and a long time supporter of youth athletics and our Parks in Bartlesville. I own and operate 3 successful restaurants, Dink’s Pit Bar-B-Que and Sterling’s Grille in Bartlesville and partner in the River Grille in one Bentonville, all for over 20 years. I have worked respectfully and responsible with the Council and Administration for the last 4 years. My staff, their long-term commitments to our restaurants and my relationship to them is a primary reason for my success. I bring that same appreciation and support of them to the citizens I serve.
Supporting local large and small companies, and growing jobs through the Bartlesville Development Authority is my primary focus going forward. Improving our quality of life, along with our great school and improved retail and restaurant choices give us greater opportunity to attract citizens to reside here, and to visit our community. The recent purchase of the Siemens complex will prove a great job creator and a great example of the expertise of the Bartlesville Development Authority. Also, with the new emphasis on working, communicating, shopping, schooling from home, and attracting telecommuters to reside here, the need to improve our internet access and reliability is crucial to the continued success of our community.
I believe all our City Council, with the leadership of Mayor Copeland, Vice Mayor have done a commendable job navigating this pandemic and I’m proud of our collective commitment and response to this unheralded event.
With great respect for the seriousness of this pandemic, our community is back to work, open and generally functioning along normal lines and this is essential to help restore our mental and physical health. Businesses are providing their own mask and distancing policies to protect staff and customers and individual personal responsibility, masking, proper hygiene, hand washing and social distancing, continue to help provide the most effective safeguards to slow the spread of COVID 19. I support the use of masks by everyone, but I do not support a governmental mask mandate.
I am running for city council because Bartlesville’s Ward 3 deserves to be represented by someone who understands their day-to-day concerns. Bartlesville is not monolithic and I believe that our city council needs to add some diversity, which I provide. I think that diversity of occupations is important on our city council, too. We need more than just financiers, lawyers, and businessmen. As a teacher, I will bring to the council a perspective that has been missing for quite some time.
As a long-time Bartian I think I understand our city well. I know where we have been, I see where we are, and I have a vision for how we can move forward. I have learned much from my time as Senator at OU, Teach for America teacher in Tulsa Public schools, elected local and district party official, and as a manager at Jareds' Frozen Custard. I have a wide variety of skillsets learned in a variety of places, in collaboration with many different people.
My top priorities for Bartlesville are:
1) Eliminate the food desert that exists on the Westside
2) Address the lack of affordable and readily available public transportation
3) Create better park and Pathfinder access for our ward
4) Fight for a fair application for our repaving plan
5) Secure our economic future through aggressive industrial diversification
6) Implement science-based public health protections
7) Raise awareness surrounding the growing homelessness issue
Medical experts agree: masks are an effective way at SLOWING the spread of coronavirus. Our numbers are not declining at a rate we can be confident in and we are now entering flu season. Until we have a working vaccine and until our country's medical experts advise us that it is ok to stop wearing them, a mask mandate is absolutely necessary. We need to protect our children, our seniors, our educators, and our small businesses and masks are a good start.