The talk had already started when Sara and I got there. It wasn't long before we sat down to listen to prepared speeches.
Irvin Dawid talked about how he had met Stephanie in the Loma Prieta Chapter of the Sierra Club, where she had an energizing effect on the leadership when she served among them. He finished by handing out fliers he had made recommending policy directions for better urban planning here.
Lenny Siegel talked about the North Mountain View Toxics Advisory Committee, where Stephanie is one of the local citizens working with the EPA on a new way of resolving the TCE pollution left at the site where GTE used to make semiconductor chips.
Alison Hicks talked about Mountain View Voices for Peace, where Stephanie has been one of the most active members, most recently participating in our tax day action at the Mountain View Post Office, where we handed out many fliers informing people that almost 30% of their tax dollars are being spent by the Pentagon, and and another 19% are just interest on the federal debt. She finished her talk by passing out fliers urging people to ask our Congresspeople to bring home our troops from Iraq.
Bruce Karney talked about Leadership Mountain View, from which Assembly Member Sally Lieber and City Council Member Rosemary Stasek are alumnae of. Stephanie is a member of this years class. He urged people that are interested in serving the city of Mountain View that haven't taken the course yet to find out more by talking to him after the speaking was over. You can click his picture to find out more.
Gloria Higgins began by thanking everybody for voting for Measure J, which is going to make a difference for the children that go to school in Mountain View. Then she talked about how she had met Stephanie when she stepped forward to help with Measure E, which hadn't passed last year. Stephanie had played a bigger role in Measure J, ending up as a Precinct Captain. She pointed out that the districts children always need more help, so anybody that wants to volunteer should talk to her to find out more.
Steve Olson talked about Mountain View Civic Forum, a group that meets monthly to hear from some local leader on whatever their burning issues of the moment is. Every meeting is different. The meetings are at Le Boulanger on Castro Street, third Wednesday of the month, 5 PM. Come to one to find out for yourself what it's like.
Stephanie began by giving a quick recap of her life before coming to Mountain View. She had grown up in Maryland and gone to college at Brown University in Rhode Island, where she had gotten her degree before coming to Mountain View to work as a Software Engineer for SGI. Stephanie first attended a City Council meeting a couple of years ago, and she found the stuff they were talking about fascinating.
Then Stephanie talked about her platform, which boiled down to making our world more sustainable. She wants to see the toxic residues in our superfund sites cleaned up. She considers the Mayfield Mall site a golden opportunity to make our community more transit friendly by putting high density housing there, right by the San Antonio train station. Stephanie is concerned that all of the fat we had in the city budget from the high tech bubble has been spent, and she sees difficult decisions ahead. She promised to keep an eye on the long term in her budget deliberations.
Stephanie concluded her remarks with these words "...with crisis comes opportunity. I believe that we can find creative solutions to ease the budget problems which will also have a positive effect in other areas, such as the environment. I ask you to please help me win a seat on the MV city council because I really want to be a part of making those solutions happen."
One of the most enjoyable parts of this kind of meeting are all the little discussions that happen after the formally structured part ends.
The mood of the crowd was optimistic. I heard several people say things like "Stephanie is going to win this race."