As County Commissioner, I will be a voice for children, families - in all the forms they take - and the shared values that bind us to each other in Buncombe County.
I believe in increasing funding for our local public schools, supporting innovation in health and human services, and policies that promote healthy communities. Ensuring that our schools are among the best in North Carolina, creating living wage jobs, and making our neighborhoods healthier - these are the priorities I will focus on.
Every child in Buncombe County should have an equal opportunity to thrive. Every person and family here should be treated with respect and dignity. Every person deserves equal opportunity to the conditions that create stability and meaning in our life - a job that pays a living wage, a sheltering home, a neighborhood you can walk in and contribute to, a safety net in times of need. As a community, this is what we aspire to. It’s what we’re capable of.
And yet, one in four kids across Buncombe County lives in poverty and, rather than equal opportunity, faces disproportionate risk. Rather than being valued, public school teachers are being underpaid. Extreme state budget cuts and partisan policies are hurting people in our county, especially regarding the issues of Medicaid expansion and school funding. Working families are being priced out of neighborhoods, unable to afford to rent or buy.
As a working mom and non-profit leader, I know firsthand what’s at stake for Buncombe County families right now. But we do not have to accept childhood poverty, struggling schools, and soaring housing costs. It won’t be easy to solve these local problems. But we can and we must.
I've led efforts to solve problems that at times seemed unwinnable - like striking down Amendment One and winning marriage equality across the South. I'm ready to bring that experience and leadership to County Commission.
We need new voices in our local politics and a commitment to finding common ground. We need a County Commission that better reflects our community and that listens to and understands the experiences of people from all walks of life.
I’ve talked with people all across our county about what matters most to them and the challenges they face. What I’ve heard ranges from the struggles of being able to find a home within the family budget, to worrying about the safety of a young black son, to wanting more parks, greenways and access to healthy foods.
Through the Campaign for Southern Equality, I’ve fought for LGBT families all across the South and I know how to fight for families here at home. As a minister, I believe in the power of people coming together to create change. As a mom, it’s also personal, it’s about the local community we are creating for our kids.
This is why I’m running for the District 1 seat on Buncombe County Commission. I want to know what matters to you: