I’ve been walking Brecksville these past weeks. For me, going door to door is an unexpected joy of campaigning. Not only do I see friends, meet new ones and visit various parts of town, the conversations and topics offer lots of food for thought. It is inspiring to encounter kind, thoughtful and passionate residents and if we haven’t met yet, I hope we do. I’ll either be walking up your driveway someday soon or you can reach out to me via phone or email.

Below are some highlights of resident questions and my responses…

Q: Why have you decided to run for a seat on Brecksville City Council?

A: I’m running for Brecksville City Council to offer more options to voters. As a 35-year Brecksville resident and graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School, I am passionate about our charming town and am willing to offer my energy, time and talent to contribute to a vibrant future.

Q: What qualifications do you offer?

A: I’ve worked in the consumer products industry for more than 16 years and I’ve held a variety of roles, from market and consumer research to product development to product management. In these roles, I have developed strategies to drive profitable growth, managed budgets, people, projects and teams. In addition I have strong collaboration and relationship management skills. Regardless of the role, the power of focus on the consumer and what he or she values about the product is paramount. Understanding the motivations, preferences and benefits the consumer seeks defines the road-map for investment. As a Councilperson for the residents of Brecksville, I will transfer my skills and focus on the needs of the residents and collaborate with leaders and stakeholders to arrive at outcomes that serve the most.

Q: How do we increase utilization of Downtown Brecksville and keep it vibrant?

A: First and foremost, the way to keep Downtown Brecksville vibrant is for residents to frequent local businesses. Having loyalty for local businesses and sharing positive experiences with friends and neighbors builds upon itself. It’s also important to consider the introduction of additional new retail space and its impact on downtown. An overabundance of space could be harmful, as empty store fronts will undermine the vibrancy we seek.

Q: What is your vision for the Central School property and preserving Old Town Brecksville?

A: I would like to see a community gathering space that could include a modest fountain/splash pad/ice rink, pergola with outdoor games and seating to chat or enjoy a coffee or ice cream. This open community space paired with single family homes that meld into the Old Town neighborhood would not only offer many benefits to residents as well as patrons of downtown businesses, but it would also honor the distinction between the downtown business district and the Old Town neighborhood.

Q: What would you like to see happen to the properties of Highland, Hilton, and Chippewa schools once the new elementary school is completed?

A: In my opinion Highland would be well suited for park/playground/sports fields and Chippewa, which is nestled in a residential area, should be single family residential space. Given that Hilton is located close by the Board of Education and Middle & High Schools, I could envision that property staying with the District.

Q: Given the increase in regional flooding, what do you think Brecksville can do to lessen the risk here?

A: There are already actions in motion to make improvements, some of which are complete and others of which will continue to be executed. While the improvement plans are executed, ongoing communication between residents and the City will enable awareness and dialogue that will inform next steps and prioritization.

Q: What is your point of view on solar panels?

A: Solar panels on the roof of residences has come up a few times while I have been walking neighborhoods chatting with residents. Currently they are permitted on the back side of homes. Depending on how the home and tree cover are positioned, some residents desire more panels. I think the use of solar panels will expand over the near term and is a topic that should be reviewed to ensure resident perspectives are reflected in the code.

Q: While probably not practical to have sidewalks in the entire city, how much priority do you believe we should dedicate to expanding sidewalks, bike paths, etc. around the city?

A: I think sidewalks and paths are very important to thoughtfully plan out so as to make it easy and safe for people to move between key destinations and areas. It will be important to identify where the links are needed so the benefits and costs are commensurate.

Q: Brecksville is one of the more desirable cities in the Rt. 82 corridor. How do we keep it that way?

A: It is the thoughtful leadership, deliberate planning and solid financial management that are foundational to Brecksville and make it such a desirable community. As a long-time resident of Brecksville, I have seen Brecksville evolve and believe it is these three consistent behaviors that lead to results that are valued by residents.