Race: Highland City Council
Occupation: Chief Information Officer
Education: MBA, Brigham Young University; Master of Information Technology, Walden University
What are the biggest issues facing your city and how do you plan to address them?
In the next few years the Highland City council will need to address some very difficult issues, including both a projected budget deficit by fiscal year 2022 as well as increasing needs for city services to maintain open spaces, roads and other needed services.
The discussions will be challenging, and tough decisions will need to be made. The city council members elected in 2019 will be responsible for finding solutions to these challenging issues. I plan to work cooperatively with the council and the Mayor to find solutions to these challenging issues. I will use my executive experience to help the council to balance the budget, and I will use my problem solving skills to find creative ways to solve the maintenance issues within the city.
What sets you apart from other candidates?
I am not a one-issue candidate. I will represent the views of the average Highland resident, and will bring an unbiased view to each issue. I will assess each potential solution with an open mind. I will review each budget request and evaluate each revenue opportunity in the same way that I have done in my professional career as an executive at several successful companies across many different industries.
What relevant experience do you have for this position?
I am currently a CIO (Chief Information Officer) for Merrick Bank. I have worked in the technology industry for my entire career in the Utah Valley. I initially started as a programmer, then moved into IT operations and finally to CIO about 15 years ago. In this role I assess project implementations, develop and review budgets, evaluate returns on investments, work collaboratively with executives from all departments, use my influence with my peers for things that I believe will benefit the company, and I negotiate with vendors for the best deal possible. I will utilize these skills and experiences on behalf of the city council.
These experiences have allowed me to work with a wide variety of individuals with various backgrounds and vastly different ideas. I enjoy the diversity of thought that comes from discussing problems and solutions with individuals with whom I may not agree immediately.
What previous elected positions have you held?
I have served on the board or as an advisor to the board of two Utah county charter schools. I have participated on advisory boards for multiple organizations, and currently sit on the board of directors for the Utah chapter of the Association of Information Management.
Is there anything else you want our readers to know about you?
I am committed to be an approachable, active listener to your concerns and applying my skill set in technology to frequently communicate about the issues facing our city. I will bring a very high-tech and executive level of experience to the council.
If we are not vigilant in maintaining our quality of life, we will lose it. We need to be proactive in our planning, zoning and vision by:
1. Identifying a community vision and solutions that are unique to Highland.
2. Review and update the city General Plan (also called the Master Plan). Meet with each neighborhood and discuss the zoning of the surrounding areas.
3. Mobilize volunteers, churches and civic groups to conduct neighborhood cleanup projects and yard service projects.
4. Start a beautification award program for homes and businesses.