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Elizabeth is DFL Endorsed!


convention_photoThank you to the DFL delegates and caucus goers – I am so honored to be the DFL endorsed candidates for Ward 8 City Council!
We are excited to knock on doors, call voters, and ensure we reach as many people as possible in this city election year.  Please let us know if you can help!

Here is my speech to the 2013 DFL Ward 8 convention:

Thank you, delegates.  It is an honor to serve the the 8th Ward and it is an honor to have your confidence and endorsement!  A special thank you to Lyndale and parts of Kingfield that are new to the 8th Ward – I am so excited to work with you.

I would like to introduce you to my family – Eric my husband, Cecelia who is 4, and my dragon, Emily, who is 1. I want to thank them – for teaching me patience and creativity, and for making me so absolutely happy.  And as a mother, I want to thank them also for helping me learn our community in a new way, through their eyes.  Thank you.


I’m running for re-election because I believe local government is a place where creative change can happen; I’m committed to the partnership between policymaking and grassroots action.


I came to city hall with experience as a civil rights and worker’s rights lawyer, as someone who worked with immigrants and New Americans, as someone who believes in civil dialogue, the power of people to inspire change, and collaboration to get things done.  And these are the values that drive my public service vision for the future.


I love the people who make up our beautiful, ever changing community.  Because Minneapolis is a powerhouse of people — who gather at the Kingfield Farmer’s Market, who organize to say, we are the 99%, and who fight for social justice, with leaders like Betty Tisel and her partner Sarah Farley, so that Minnesota is on the cusp of becoming the 12th State to say that freedom to marry is the law of the land!


I want to thank you for your questions about leadership and how I approach the job of council member.  Because I believe the heart of public service is how we work together to create change, how we listen and set the agenda together, not just maintain the status quo.


And in the 8th Ward of Minneapolis, community leadership includes bringing east and west together, crossing 35W, and turning a painful racial divide that began with conversation about a dog park into opportunity to have bold conversations about race and our community’s history.  Neighbors like Sara Duniway, Doris Christopher, Michael Vanderford, Verlena Matey-Keke and others have helped build these bridges, and inspired the creation of One Minneapolis One Read.


I’m running because I believe that the vision for our future can be found in partnership with our community, listening to the people right here in this room, in the apartments of Nicollet Square, in Horn Towers, in Sagrado Corazon and the Sabathani Community Center, and throughout our neighborhoods. When we listen, collaborate and partner, our potential is unlimited.


Congratulations to Scott Farrell, who owns 4 point Tattoo at 38th & Chicago, a corner just recognized by Minnesota Monthly as one of the top “up and coming” business areas in the Twin Cities.   My commitment to Scott, and to you, is that 38th & Chicago remains a top priority for ensuring it is a safe, great neighborhood space.


Thank you to Ms. Clorasteen Wilson, an amazing mentor, who has taught me that focusing on the basics, like property taxes and improving our city services, is one of the most important things we do.  I’m proud we reformed our pension system in Minneapolis, saving $20 million in 2012 alone, because keeping our financial foundation strong is what allows us to make great changes like those blue one sort recycle carts.


You have told me that Minneapolis must be a leader in environmental sustainability and fighting climate change.  And it is leaders like Julie Ristau, around the local food movement, and Jay Walljasper, the ultimate walking and biking guru, who are helping push the city vision to new places.  What do I see in our future?  An urban style grocery store in our neighborhood, 60 miles of protected bikeways, a streetcar in Minneapolis, and a reinvigorated focus on clean energy.  I will be a champion for making Minneapolis a green city leader we are proud of.


What else do I see for our future? Like Hire Minnesota says, we have to turn ourselves from worst to first in racial equity.  This is an issue critical our future as a city, and I am dedicated to doing what it takes.  And we’ve had some project success.  I’m proud to have authored the stadium equity hiring plan.  The city’s step up job program’s opportunities have been targeted to young people of color.  And thanks to the Second Chance Coalition, our state is about to sign into law a requirement – just like the City of Minneapolis has – that private employers can’t ask about criminal history on the hiring application.  My commitment is a laser focus on a culture of equity, to follow through on a promise to evaluate city policy decisions with a racial equity toolkit being developed right now based on a model from Seattle, and to work with you to change this trajectory.


I would like to do a special thank you to two people who are part of the Ward 8 leadership team, two amazing women, who work hard and connect to community every day –  to Andrea Jenkins and Jennifer White, from the bottom of my heart I thank you.


I make this promise to you:  I bring a progressive vision to City Hall.  I am an active hands-on partner with our neighborhoods, listening and responding to you.  And I will use my experience to be bold, build coalitions, and drive change – because a passive “yes” vote is not enough.  I thank you for your support, to continue our work to building a great city that serves our diverse residents today, and for future generations

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