Building Bridges for a Better Baltimore in the 41st District
I’m a proud father of two young children, a Poly graduate, lifelong city resident, and I have committed my professional career and personal life in the service of my neighbors because I know the promise of our city’s neighborhoods when they have the resources that they need and deserve.
As a young neighborhood liaison in the Mayor’s Office, I advocated for communities in City Hall and fought to have the city provide services that the communities demanded.
I spearheaded the Mayor’s Conference of Neighborhoods to bring communities together beyond their neighborhood boundaries to learn from one another on best practices and capacity-building.
As I progressed in my career, I have taken on different roles from Chief of Staff for government agencies, to Director of Community Affairs for Johns Hopkins and working for a local community development corporation.
No matter where I’ve been or who I’ve worked for, the common theme is what we’ve done together to help change communities.
Now I am running for state delegate for the 41st district to fight for better schools, better public transportation, smarter public safety policies, and equal community development for all our neighborhoods.
My interest in running for delegate is simple, our neighborhoods have lost the connection with what’s happening in Annapolis and what’s needed in the district.
I’m running for delegate because I believe I have the experience to be the bridge between the changemakers and those that need the change.
I have four core priorities as a candidate, that I will actively affect with legislation, constituent service, and leadership once in office.
The safety of our citizens is paramount. It’s time to develop and implement policies to curb gun violence, support and expand proven grass-roots public safety organizations, and train and employ citizens who collectively contribute to a safer environment for everyone.
I will fight for more resources to go to proven grassroots public safety organizations that provide critical assistance to communities by helping curb violence and offer resources for those who are or have been involved in criminal activities. Organizations such as Safe Streets, Cease Fire and Turn Around Tuesday need the financial support, as well as a coordinated effort, to target the communities most in need of the critical services they provide to address violence in our neighborhoods.
Public education should be quality education, with every resource available to support our students and future generations.
The Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education has multiple promising preliminary findings in its draft, but I look forward to seeing the final recommendations and will fight to ensure they include priorities such as universal access to Prekindergarten, adequate funding for Baltimore City Public Schools, teacher incentives for those who are highly effective in the classroom, and a governance structure to guide the implementation of the recommendations of the Commission. There must be a stronger system of governance to ensure that the recommendations are not merely implemented but are also effective. We must identify multiple ways to fund the reforms, including private/public partnerships.
Public transportation should be accessible, timely, and affordable for everyone.
There is a clearly a disproportionate gap between what’s spent on roads and public transportation. HB372 passed in the general assembly and requires the Maryland Transit Administration to prepare a Central Maryland Regional Transit Plan to identify the resources needed to meet its transportation needs. The Baltimore region is not adequately served by transit. Once we have the recommendations for a true transit system for the region, I will fight to ensure funds are adequately spent to implement the system.
The economic disparity between race and geography needs to be acknowledged and addressed so that we can have substantial community development and economic equality throughout our city and state. It’s vitally important to me to work to bring people together to make decisive choices and tackle systemic issues head on.
There is no one initiative that will address the disparity. There are some longstanding issues that we must find multiple ways to address. Efforts include:
- Increase the minimum wage to give individuals a living wage of $15 per hour
- Put people to work to rebuild the state’s infrastructure
- Ensure that new housing development includes affordable units for low and moderate-income residents
- Fund and promote more financial literacy programming
- Invest in public education with an eye toward public/private partnership
- Ensure that our public transportation takes individuals to job centers.
These are my priorities because they are our priorities. These are my priorities because I am a proud father and life-long resident of Baltimore city. These are my priorities because, for more than a decade, I have dedicated my professional life to work that brings resources to communities throughout the state. These are my priorities, and I am ready to continue my work by representing you and the citizens of the 41st District in the Maryland House of Delegates.
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