Address: 8051 Cheyenne Ave
Family: Wife Kailey, baby girl arriving this fall and pup Denali
Employment: Account management leader at MatrixCare (by ResMed)
Education: B.A. Political Science and History, Bethel University; MBA from University of Minnesota
Hobbies/Interests: We love the great Minnesota outdoor activities like hiking, camping and playing broomball. We’re also involved in youth ministry at our local faith community.
Previous experience that would prove helpful in position: Healthcare tech innovation; education in government policy; serving on local boards/committees in previous neighborhoods; experience in leadership roles.
The City Council of 2021 and beyond will need to embrace creativity and innovation to react rapidly and decisively to navigate the short-term economic devastation from the pandemic, and to set long-term strategic plans in motion that will lead the city to thrive in the future. I come from the private sector of healthcare technology, where pressure is high to excel and deliver quickly. I would inject this energy and am running to make sure Chanhassen has the heart and drive to weather the storm and come out on the other side as strong as ever.
What are the top three issues you would face during your term?
Navigating economic recovery and what remains of getting through the pandemic will continue to be the No. 1 issue that all governments face, including Chanhassen’s council.
Second, we live in a time of heightened distrust and misinformation between the people and government. Chanhassen’s ability to serve its citizens is contingent upon there being trust and engaging dialogue. Our residents must have a voice in the decisions ahead, especially in such a tumultuous time.
The next four years will also see continued opportunities for development and growth. As we consider these plans, we must make decisions that maintain Chanhassen’s identity.
How will you reach out to residents during your term?
Communication is only successful if it is received and if it engages people’s interests. It will be my duty to ensure that every available platform is used to reach Chanhassen citizens. This means mail, interviews and focus groups, social media. I want to see more online surveys to gather feedback on proposed projects. I’d also love to have more informal meet and greet sessions in our beautiful parks to make sure council members are as accessible as possible to residents. This form of community outreach should not just be limited to campaign season when we’re asking for your vote.
What role should the city have in assisting people and businesses in the pandemic?
The economic devastation to businesses and individuals has been so impactful the city must help. To ensure our local businesses don’t have to close their doors, we must look to loosen and rethink city policies to grant businesses freedom to innovate and connect them to financial resources like loans and grants. For individuals we must support education and services for those who have been left unemployed and hit harder economically. We should focus on programming to help prepare resumes and job interviews, and provide support for volunteer opportunities, connecting those more fortunate among us to help those most impacted.
What areas would you adjust in the city budget?
On expenditures, I will emphasize the need to examine creative cost-sharing and tighter partnerships with neighboring cities, counties and state governments. If we can avoid Chanhassen paying for an entire project through collaboration, those opportunities should be rigorously explored. We also must review city permits and fees to balance appropriate costs and make sure innovation, like our new electronic system, are pursued to create efficiencies. On revenue, I’ll help identify additional funding sources and take advantage of approaches that keep tax rates flat. Chanhassen should have influence to take advantage of externally available funds while avoiding loss of independence.
What is your long-range vision for the city of Chanhassen?
My vision is encapsulated by the concept of Chanhassen Forever. It fulfills the promise that people can live here no matter what stage of life they are in. It means preserving the character and soul of this city and the reasons why we love it. It entails retaining connected and well-kept trails, numerous and quality parks, and healthy lakes. It means balancing the old and the new, because both historic qualities and innovation are valuable to this city. Finally, I want this to be a desirable place for entrepreneurs and new, modern businesses to launch and grow.
What qualities would you like to see in the new city manager?
A strong city manager would be accessible to both staff and City Council and act as a conduit for communication. They will take the citizen-focused vision we develop as a City Council and ensure that it is executed upon. Additionally, they should have a strong understanding of the heart and soul of Chanhassen as well as surrounding areas so that they can continue developing partnerships with our neighbors. Lastly, they should have strong long-term planning and strategic skills enabling them to look at our city vision as a whole. Above all, they need to be someone that the people trust.
Have you been charged in the past year, or ever been convicted, of a misdemeanor or higher, or been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy or foreclosure?