I moved to Burlington in 2012, graduated from UVM in 2016, and have been fighting for social, economic and climate justice — both through paid positions and outside of work — ever since. I also play piano and sing in the band Warm Water.
My parents lived in Burlington in the early 1980’s when Bernie Sanders was mayor. Bernie and progressive city councilors worked with thousands of community members to transform the city, which had previously been controlled by machine politics.
Under progressive leadership, Burlington saw its government put people first. Much of the lakefront was cleaned up and redeveloped into a beautiful public park. Neglected streets were plowed and potholes were filled. Neighborhood Planning Assemblies were formed. Permanently affordable housing was built. Church Street was closed to cars. We created a public electric utility, which allowed us to later became the first U.S. city to achieve 100% renewable electricity. Burlington was an innovative, leading city that did things differently and succeeded because of it.
I believe much of this spirit has been lost under our current leadership. The majority of Burlingtonians are renters, yet only two out of the twelve city councilors rent. We are still developing and beautifying our city, but we are doing very little to ensure that low-income people are able to remain here. Most of my friends from college left Burlington when we graduated. They wanted to stay, but they couldn’t find a job that would pay them the wages needed to live in Burlington.
I want to help Burlington become the innovative, progressive city that it has the potential to be. We must prioritize and work alongside the people in our community who are struggling the most. We must boldly confront the biggest crisis of our time: climate change. We must combat racism, sexism, xenophobia, and all other forms of discrimination that persist in our community. None of these things can be done by a handful of people at City Hall alone. In order to truly improve the city we love, we need a city government that gives real power to the people of Burlington. This is what I hope to push for during my campaign and after the election – regardless of the outcome.
If you believe in this vision, please join me.