1. Debbie believes that elected officials are to serve the citizens, not treat the office as a prize or promotion.
2. Debbie believes that serving means listening to all constituents. She will make it easier for Johnson City residents to share concerns and serve on city boards and committees. Citizen accessibility and involvement creates healthy, thriving communities for everyone.
3. Debbie believes strong communities have the following key building blocks:
A high-quality public education system. As an educator herself, she is currently a professor at ETSU, but started as a high school math teacher.
A focus on recruiting employers with pay scales and benefits that support families.
Support for entrepreneurs: both local residents who need help with start-ups as well as those moving to the region for the quality of life Johnson City has to offer.
Increased and ongoing attention to existing neighborhoods and infrastructure is vital for building a vibrant city.
4. Debbie believes that inclusion is more than a buzz word. It is connection, immersion, empathy, action, commitment, and accountability. We can’t just say we welcome a diverse community. We have to engage with all who call Johnson City home. Elected officials must go to residents in their community centers regularly. City committees must be monitored for inclusive practices. Commission decisions must be measured for positive impact.
5. This community is moving forward with economic development toward outdoor recreation. Debbie believes we must prioritize our commitment to environmental protection of clean water, forests, wildlife, and mountain trails. Johnson City must establish a task force to monitor environmental impacts on our community and the region. Outdoor recreation is only as sustainable as the health of the environment.
6. Debbie believes in the commitment to seeking win-win decisions that support regionalism. A rising tide raises all boats—all of Johnson City’s citizens will reap the benefits of an improved regional economy.
7. Debbie is committed to reconvening the city’s task force on homelessness. Poverty, lack of affordable housing, accessible healthcare, and addiction treatment all contribute to the problem. It will take a multifaceted and committed approach to address the needs of the homeless in Johnson City.
8. Debbie believes strongly that government policies and laws should elevate human value and worth. Hate has no place in city government.