I’m taking a stand for a stronger, fairer DC

I set my roots down here in DC more than 30 years ago, proud to call this city my home. Over those years, I married my wonderful wife, raised two great sons who went through DC Public Schools, and dedicated myself to serving our community.

I’m proud that DC is a progressive community that stands up for its values, from LGBTQ rights to universal pre-kindergarten to a $15 minimum wage. Those are my values, too.

But I’m deeply concerned that we’re not rising to the very real challenges posed by gentrification and development. In the midst of the city’s tremendous prosperity, life is getting harder for many residents, particularly Black and Latinx families, who have shaped DC’s economy, history, and culture. Too many of our neighbors are shut out from the dream of buying a home or starting a business, a result of the vast racial inequity in wealth. The median net worth for Black DC households is just $3,500, compared with $284,000 for white households, one of the widest differences in the nation. That’s unacceptable.

I’m running for DC Council Chair because the time has come to intervene. We’re not doing enough as a city to ensure that DC’s growing economy doesn’t come at the cost of growing inequality. I’m ready to tackle DC’s major challenges, from ending homelessness to strengthening our schools for all students to re-building Metro.

I’ve spent decades working alongside community leaders to make life better for DC residents. That’s why I’ve decided to step down from the DC Fiscal Policy Institute to run for office so I can do even more for our communities. I’ve fought for investments in affordable housing, a higher minimum wage and paid sick leave for working families, property tax aid to help families stay in their homes, and policies to protect the economic security of our youngest residents. I was honored to lead a DC commission to reform school financing and to serve with former Mayor Williams on a commission that secured the lowest tax rates in the country for our lowest-income residents.

Through it all, I’ve seen how incredible our city can be when we work together to hold our government accountable and close the gaps that divide us. That is the city I want for us.

I want DC to be a great home for both minimum-wage workers and law firm partners. I want DC to be a home where moms eager to find a good job can support their kids and seniors can retire in hard-earned comfort and peace. I want DC to be home to both new and long-term residents, particularly Black families who have called DC home for generations.

I believe all of DC will be stronger when everyone is able to live up to their potential. Together, let’s make DC a stronger, fairer city we can all be proud to call our home.