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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Lakewood City Council Ward 5

Voters will elect one City Council Members from the Ward they reside within the City of Lakewood. In addition to the Voter Guide, a 30-minute candidate forum video is available to view on YOUTUBE at

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  • Chad Gardner

  • Candidate picture

    Dana Gutwein

Biographical Information

What do you see as a current challenge for your Ward specifically and what action would you propose to overcome it?

With the passing of Lakewood Question 200 the City Council will be determining the number of allocations available for issuance for each year based on 1% of the number of estimated dwelling units as of Dec. 31st of the previous year as the equal point – while allowing for any additions of new dwellings, annexations and exempted projects – and subtractions – for any destroyed or abandoned dwellings and expired permits. How do you see this change affecting your Ward? And what plans, if any, do you have for its implementation?

In your opinion, what makes the City of Lakewood a ‘great place’ to live?

What challenges for your Ward, if any do you anticipate as the Lakewood 2025 Moving Forward Comprehensive Plan approaches its completion dates during your term?

As we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the City of Lakewood, what is your vision for Lakewood’s future and more specifically for your Ward?

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Background A former field engineer, Lakewood mom and councilwoman, I’m running for re-election to ensure everyone in Lakewood has the opportunity to succeed and earn a good life. I share your values: My kids learned to walk, bike, and swim in Lakewood parks. My parents are retiring here. We love the location, Jeffco schools, and quality of life here in Lakewood. Still, my family is facing the same challenges and concerns as families all across Lakewood- the cost of childcare, healthcare, student loans, housing, safety, and keeping our air and water clean. That’s why I will do everything I can to keep our community safe, preserve our parks and open spaces, and protect our Colorado Way of Life. I work hard for you: As a mother with two young kids, I couldn’t shake my growing concern about their future, and frankly, about the world they are living in today. I decided to help by starting the Sustainable Neighborhoods Program in my neighborhood, and join one of Lakewood’s resident commissions. I helped start a community garden, a leaf composting project, and more. This experience motivated me to run for city council. Together, we won, and I became the youngest woman elected to the body, and the only member on council with kids under 18 at the time. I’ve worked hard for this community for the last 6 years. I deliver results for you: That same persistence and hard work is how we’ve worked together to get results for families all across Lakewood. Together we protected over 60 new acres of open space, expanded our police force, invested in traffic mitigation, passed legislation to prevent youth vaping, stood up for our Jeffco Schools, held developers accountable to higher standards, advocated for our fire department, and more.
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Contact phone 720-234-8584
Preserving and protecting what we love about Lakewood during this time of growth is one of the biggest challenges facing ward 5. This includes open spaces, protecting our clean air and water, affordability, public safety, and more. I will continue to look for and help pass concrete solutions to these issues. During my term during my term, we preserved new acres by purchasing 59 acres of the Taylor Property, marking one of the largest purchases of open space in a generation. I have championed progress toward our clean air and clean water goals. This is one of the biggest reasons I ran, because I believe it’s our responsibility as a community to ensure the next generation can enjoy the Colorado Way of Life. I support adding agents to our force and innovative crime prevention like our Community Action Team, Hotel/Motel License and regional anti car-theft efforts. I will work with you to stand up for our values and find solutions that work for us.
We must fully implement the measure passed by voters. Let’s hold developers accountable to meet our community vision. Ward 5 does not have many growth areas. Any new projects should match neighborhood character, be right-sized, and high quality. Let’s continue the community’s vision for revitalizing Colfax and Sheridan. As we implement, we must also keep in mind impacts on cost of living. Cost of housing in particular is skyrocketing throughout the Denver Metro Area, and we must be thoughtful of impacts on our local economy as we implement the growth cap. Finally, parks and open space, public safety, and infrastructure are critical to quality of life, yet not addressed by the ordinance. I advocated to increase investment in these areas without raising taxes, and will continue to stand for these values.
Three generations of my family live in Lakewood. My kids learned to walk, bike, and swim in Lakewood parks. My parents are retiring here. We love the location, access to world class education in our Jeffco schools, and world class recreation. I think one of our most special and beloved attributes is our amount of parks and open spaces- about one quarter of our city is preserved parkland. This is something I’ve worked hard to expand and to protect. Lakewood is also becoming a leader in championing clean air and water goals, has access to opportunity in terms of jobs, education, and programs and services to help age in place, and is becoming a bikeable and walkable city. I believe we also have the best teachers, firefighters and police departments in the world. Perhaps most important- what makes this city great are the people and our sense of community. Together we have stepped up to meet whatever challenges come our way, and I know we will continue to do so.
I think our City and Ward 5 will face the same challenges: Growth: We must preserve what we love about Lakewood during this growth period. This includes open spaces, affordability and quality of life. Open Spaces, Clean Air and Water: I advocated for purchase of the Taylor property and champion progress toward our clean air and clean water goals. Public Safety: I support adding agents to our force, and innovative crime prevention like our Community Action Team, Hotel/Motel License and regional anti car-theft efforts. Infrastructure: Lakewood is 50 years old this year, and some of our infrastructure for both storm water and transit is old and outdated. It is a priority for our community to ensure we address these challenges together. Economy: We need to continue to ensure we attract good jobs to the city of Lakewood, that we foster an environment where small businesses can thrive and that we have the resources we need to meet increased demand for service as we age.

Vision for Lakewood: - We are a city where residents of all ages have the opportunity to succeed and earn a good life. This includes access to good paying jobs, world class education, services to age in place, and affordable and efficient transportation. - We are leaders in protecting our environment, including our parks, open spaces, clean air and clean water. - We are a city with affordable, reliable and efficient transportation systems with options to walk, ride a bike, use public transit or a car. - We are a city where every resident feels safe and welcome in our city- at home, at school, at work, on the roads. - We are a city that uses information, respect and courage to meet our challenges and respect our differences.