Thank you all so much for being here today. I’m excited to kickoff my campaign for County Commissioner District 3. First and foremost, let me say that I absolutely love this community. I was born and raised in Pueblo, I went to elementary school in District 70, attended middle school in District 60 and graduated from South High School. In 2016, I graduated from CSU-Pueblo with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management, and I come from a family with a rich history in Pueblo County. My family first came to Pueblo in 1885, my great-grandpa worked at the Steel Mill, and my grandparents owned and operated three Baskin-Robbins ice cream stores in Pueblo for over 20 years. I am running for County Commissioner because I simply have a burning desire to serve the people in this community. I want to help people, I want to make a difference, and I want to help ensure that we keep striving to push ahead and move forward.
I have spent my entire professional life serving this community, and I have gained invaluable experience that I will bring to this position. I’ve worked for the Small Business Development Center where I helped people start their own businesses, and I founded the Startup Pueblo Meetup to help build an entrepreneurial ecosystem in Pueblo. I’ve worked in health care for the Pueblo Triple Aim Corporation where I helped facilitate collaboration around issues like the opioid crisis and affordable housing, and I currently work for Sangre de Cristo Community Care as their Director of Development, where I’ve raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to help the organization further its mission of providing hospice and palliative care to southern Colorado. I’ve also worked in education serving on the CSU-Pueblo Foundation Board of Directors, President of the CSU-Pueblo Alumni Association Board of Directors, and serving on the District 60 Board of Education since 2017, and serving as the President of the Board for the last 2 years. Over the course of my term on the Board of Education, we were able to pass a $218 million bond, which will lead to 5 brand new, state-of-the-art schools in our community, as well as significant upgrades and improvements to various other buildings throughout the district. What I’ve learned from those experiences is how important it is to be passionate about my work, to be open-minded, willing to listen and learn, and to have a hunger to work hard to have an impact.
My ultimate vision for Pueblo County is to help people better their lives, to achieve upward mobility, and ensure that their kids lives are better than their own. My goal is to expand opportunity and widen the circle of prosperity in our County to ensure that we continue moving forward, together, as a community. That means working to address and increase efforts around adverse childhood experiences, which are linked to chronic health problems, mental health, substance misuse, and reduced educational and occupational achievement. It means creating more jobs and economic opportunity that gives families the opportunity to better their lives. And it means addressing disparities in our communities across Pueblo County, to ensure that the progress we make is more equitable and inclusive. As the saying goes, “A rising tide lifts all boats.” Above all else, I want this campaign to be about people. I want to engage people in the political process who haven’t been engaged before, and I want to bring this campaign into every community, neighborhood, and home that I possibly can. I want to listen, I want to learn from those around me, and I want people to be at the very core of this campaign, and hopefully, forward into my time in office. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from my time serving in elected office on the Board of Education, it’s the importance of being accessible to the community and constantly, intentionally engaging with the people I represent.
My entire life, I’ve always felt that it was such an advantage to be from Pueblo, and to have been shaped and molded by the culture and mentality of this community. We’re hard-working, blue-collar, and full of grit. We’ve been through a lot as a community, and time and time again, we get back up and keep fighting. I truly believe that Pueblo is a great community. We have a rich history that we can always cherish and celebrate, and there has been a lot of progress made over the years that we can be proud of. But I believe there is more we can achieve, more we can do, and more that we can strive to be.
I’ve had a feeling that Pueblo County is right on the verge of taking a huge step forward. Winston Churchill once said, “To each their comes in their lifetime a special moment when they are figuratively tapped on the shoulder and offered the chance to do a very special thing, unique to them and fitted to their talents. What a tragedy if that moment finds them unprepared or unqualified for that which could have been their finest hour.” I believe our finest hour is upon us, and we must seize the opportunity to see that Pueblo County continues our march towards progress. I believe the times call for courage, passion, and imagination, and that’s what I plan to represent on the Board of County Commissioners. Thank you.