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Shawnee Council Ward 3 (2 Year Unexpired Term)

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    Lisa Larson-Bunnell

  • Kevin Straub

Biographical Information

1. What do you believe are the three critical projects or initiatives that will move your city/district forward?

2. What skills, expertise, or competencies qualify you for this position?

3. What specific actions should your city take or continue to insure affordable housing is available?

4. Shawnee, Olathe, Lenexa, Overland Park candidates: Should your city adopt a non-discrimination ordinance that provides legal protections for LGBTQ+ individuals?

Personal Biography I first moved with my parents to western Shawnee 20 years ago when they bought a new home in Hillcrest Farm. My parents still live there, in the same house. I moved to St. Louis for law school and the start of my career, but as my husband Nick and I talked about starting a family, we were drawn back to Kansas City. I was fortunate to be hired as an attorney at a local non-profit hospital and we now have a four year old son named Lucas.
Campaign Phone (913) 738-9320
Campaign Email
Campaign Web Site
Education I received my Bachelor’s degree in Political Science with a concentration in Women’s Studies from Knox College. I earned my law degree and Masters in Healthcare Administration from Saint Louis University and hold certifications in Healthcare Compliance and Risk Management.
Community/Public Service I currently represent the City of Shawnee as a council member in Ward 3. I am the Social Committee chairperson of my neighborhood association. I also have the honor of serving as this year’s chairperson of the Holiday of Hope annual dinner benefiting the Johnson County Christmas Bureau. I previously volunteered as a volunteer tax preparer through the VITA program, an election judge in the City of Saint Louis, a volunteer after-school tutor with the Youth Technology Education Center, and as a Junior Achievement mentor/teacher.
Address 7816 Shady Bend Ct. Shawnee, KS 66227
CampaignPhone 913-738-9320
Infrastructure/Public Safety--The corrugated metal pipes used throughout our city’s storm water management system are failing. If they are not replaced before they fail, they will cause sinkholes. I also want to make sure our police and fire departments are appropriately structured and funded compared to other cities our size.

Commercial Development--The city’s commercial tax base is smaller than our neighboring communities. This means our homeowners carry a heavier burden to pay for our infrastructure and public safety needs. We must foster smart commercial and residential development to increase our tax base and defray the tax burden currently carried by homeowners. This can be accomplished with appropriate land use planning as well as actively soliciting businesses who share our community values.

Our Community--Keep Shawnee a welcoming, accessible, and inclusive community.
During my time on the council, I have proven myself to be an engaged leader who is always prepared. I support smart development that does not compromise the character of our city. I take fiscal responsibility seriously. I have a strong educational and professional background that helps me navigate even the most complex municipal undertakings. I take extra time to build relationships with my fellow council members, the city staff, and our community members. I am accessible and responsive. I value everyone’s opinions and contributions, especially when they disagree with my own. I have a strong moral and ethical compass that values kindness over personal gain.
I am committed to keeping Shawnee welcoming, inclusive and accessible. We cannot be accessible when we do not have enough affordable housing. According to United Community Services of Johnson County, police officers, fire fighters, social workers, and elementary school teachers cannot afford to live in our city. The presence of these individuals enhances our community. I believe that we have a need for more affordable housing in our area so these hard workers have the opportunity to live here if they choose. I am in support of both market rate and luxury multi-family housing in Shawnee. I am also in support of smaller units such as studio apartments that will appeal to young professionals working in our "tech corridor." New smaller homes with lower starting prices would also be a welcome addition.

While we must be thoughtful about the precise location of these developments, having a variety of housing options will make our community stronger.
I believe in keeping Shawnee a welcoming, inclusive, and accessible place. I understand that our neighbors in the LGBTQIA community currently lack equal protection under the law, and that is not acceptable. Specifically, they can be denied employment, housing, and services simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This can happen regardless of whether they are the best worker or a model tenant. Many will argue that this is an issue for the state or federal government. I agree that it would be best if these protections were extended at the state or federal levels. However, no federal or state law prohibits the city from providing protections to these individuals.

I am committed to exploring all solutions at the city level to remedy this inequity. This issue will be taken up at the August 13th Council Committee meeting. I am championing this effort. Council Committee is an open meeting where members of the public are welcome to comment.
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