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Detroit City Clerk

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    Garlin D. Gilchrist II Former Director of Innovation & Emerging Technology, City of Detroit

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    Janice M. Winfrey City Clerk

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Biographical Information

Please provide information about your qualifications and experience and explain why you are running for this position.

What are the priority issues facing the Clerk's office and what actions would you take to address them if elected?

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Education 2005 B.S.E. Computer Engineering, University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) College of Engineering; 2005 B.S.E. Computer Science in Engineering, University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) College of Engineering
As a native Detroiter who learned the importance of community leadership from my parents, I grew up believing in an individual’s power to make a difference. After graduating from the University of Michigan with degrees in Computer Engineering and Computer Science, and working at Microsoft, I got to work helping people around the country organize to tackle big issues like poverty, voter suppression, and racial injustice. As Detroit’s Director of Innovation, I made government work for the people by making public information and city services easier to access. But after my wife, three-year-old twins, and I had a horrible voting experience in November 2016—as did thousands of Detroiters—my community asked me to step up to be Detroit City Clerk. As City Clerk, Gilchrist will provide more polling places, create a smoother voting process, and make city government more accessible and responsive.
1. Training: The State found inadequate training was a key cause of the failure of Detroit's voting process in November 2016. I will transform how we train by a) making training available year-round and on demand; b) providing training that accommodates different learning styles (visual, kinesthetic, auditory, etc.); c) meets different people's literacy levels.

2. Keeping residents informed: This job is about more than elections—it's about keeping residents abreast so they can be informed participants in decision-making every day. I will a) bring the open data and transparency program to its rightful place and expand it to cover more data; and b) open a City Clerk center in every City Council district.

3. Modernize City Council: I will a) upgrade City Council's business systems; b) provide early access to hearing agendas and minutes; c) post videos with transcript/captions
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Education Graduate of Eastern Michigan University
Occupation/current position City Clerk
As City Clerk for Detroit, I have three charter-mandated roles: Official Record Keeper, Clerk to the Detroit City Council and Chief Elections Officer. I have improved the legislative process by digitizing records, providing government transparency and ensuring that citizens have greater access.

As the Chief Elections Officer, I’ve implemented two new voting systems, simultaneously, while providing early and accurate elections result reporting. Under my leadership, Detroit received grants to improve voting access for our military service men and women.

I demonstrate personal and professional courage in the execution of my duties. I am guided by the selfless principle to give voice to those citizens who are least able to help themselves.

Priority #1. In order to reduce long lines at the polls, especially during high turnout, during Presidential Elections, my goal is to reduce the number of precincts within a polling place to three.

Priority #2. In order to connect with Millennials, we will increase our social media presence, as well as storing more information online, in addition to holding more forums throughout the city.

Priority #3. Successfully implement our new state-of-art voting system to enhance voter experience at the polls on Election Day. logo


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