When I last left you, three weeks ago, I had fought the good fight…against my company…just for the right to take a seat should I win one for the Mountain View City Council. I prevailed. You can read about all that drama in my last two diaries. For information purposes, Mountain View is in Silicon Valley, is home to Google, LinkedIn, Intuit, Symantec, Synopsys, and has offices for Facebook and Microsoft as well. And that doesn't include the hundreds of “start-ups” that are nearly in every nook-and-cranny around town. To say we’re high tech is nearly an understatement. We define the culture.
At the beginning of the year, January 3rd to be precise, I had filed my paperwork with the City declaring my intention to run for City Council (the real application period for declaring your candidacy comes in July and closes in August). I did that early just in case there was a hiccup with respect to some aspect of my candidacy. In the first few weeks, I established a web presence, a campaign subcommittee, and a campaign manager. Things were looking up, even if I was entirely early in the process. In fact, nearly everybody was saying to me, “with the election in November, why are you starting so early?!” Lo and behold, my fears were realized when I was getting severe pushback from my company as to approval. And for 8 weeks or more (and as new candidates kept entering the race), I couldn’t do anything campaign related as I sorted all of that out.
During those 8 weeks, the grounds underfoot were moving. One of the key issues of this election is where do the candidates stand with respect to development. Mountain View (indeed the entire Bay Area) has the opposite problem of many cities across the country: too many jobs, not enough affordable places for people to live. There is a tremendous consequence happening as you sit here and read this: rents are going up, sometimes at alarming rates, forcing many of the folks who don’t have high paying high tech jobs out of the area. We’re losing our economic diversity as gentrification takes hold. Teachers are leaving. Folks who serve our food are leaving. Retirees are leaving. And among those who felt that pinch: my campaign manager! She has left California. She was very skilled and is missed for multiple reasons.
So I come out of my corporate situation (again, read my past diaries) only to have to re-organize my campaign infrastructure.
But one really good thing came out of all of that nonsense: I discovered there is a community of folks who support my campaign that I didn’t even know. That is, I didn’t know who they were as we had never met. But all of that has changed. I recently found a new campaign manager, one with different skills in marketing and message management. She is already helping me align my personal values into campaign themes I can use for the “debates” and my campaign collateral.
With a newly energized team, someone to help me in the administration of the race, messages being honed, etc, I feel very positive. There are 3 open seats (no incumbents as they’ve all termed out) and thus far, seven candidates. I’ve heard rumors that number will swell to 12. And although each candidate comes with their strengths (one candidate works for our County Supervisor, another two have run before and have experience, a few have worked on the Planning Commission, etc) I feel I have a great chance because my civic resume is second to none in this race. My experience breadth is unrivaled and I am known by many within my town.
I am running for City Council because Mountain View is presently going through a metamorphosis. There are those that would like to stop the butterfly from emerging, whereas I’d like to help shape the course it takes to maturity. And I’d like our residents to participate in the discussions as to what that eventually should look like. I'd like to make sure our city continues its economic prosperity and makes room for the diversity we all cherish; both economic and cultural.
Please support me:
Facebook: Ken Rosenberg for Mountain View City Council