I want stuff to just work. But when it doesn't, I roll up my sleeves and set about addressing and resolving the underlying issue.
The last decade brought me into the political and organizing world; particularly on the local level, because that's where rubber meets road. Many residents are ready for change, and through these years of advocacy, my life's work is in equipping everyday folks on how to collectively go about creating it.
I'm also a fifth-term Precinct Committee Officer, former Legislative Co-Chair with local PTA, and former UFCW Local 400 member. I've worked on campaigns spanning precincts all the way up to Presidential. I'm ready to bring that gumption and experience to Kenmore City Council, and put it to work in building a stronger and more engaged community.
This campaign is thrilled, grateful, and honored to have the support of the following elected officials, organizations, and individuals. ( We are still taking meetings and completing questionnaires, and do expect to post more soon, so please reach out if you or your organization are interested in supporting ❤️ firstname.lastname@example.org )
"Jon Culver is an absolute champion for local democracy, working families, and moving Kenmore forward."
– Corina Pfeil, Kenmore City Councilmember
"Jon will bring a new perspective and progressive voice to Kenmore."
– Eric Adman, Northshore Fire Commissioner
"Jon Culver is a strong leader with the vision, values, and voice Kenmore needs as we build a resilient, sustainable, and vibrant future together."
– Tracy Banaszynski, Kenmore Planning Commissioner
"Kenmore City Council Position #5 needs a new voice to represent the residents of Kenmore. I was deeply grateful for all the support I received during the Primary election, but moving forward, Jon Culver has my support for Kenmore City Council Position #5. The city needs to act now and make good tough decisions on many issues including city finance, public safety, climate action and housing as just a start. The city has operated in a reactionary mode for years and this lack of action has placed us in a deep hole that has cost us all. Jon Culver will help bring new ideas and actions that the City of Kenmore needs to make going forward."
– Mark Prince, Former Opponent & Fellow Candidate for Kenmore City Council, Pos. 5
Granted, claiming 'credit' is a dubious business, so that's not what I want to do here. Folks who put in the work know well that most any victory is the culmination of teamwork and collaboration, and usually won through a sustained and committed effort. So it's in this spirit that I want to share three selected instances where I felt like my contributions were an instrumental aspect — one among many — in bringing home that "W."
I designed a mockup to help illustrate how the finished project might look, and helped rally folks out to the Special Meeting where the issue was to be reconsidered.
Council first voted 6-1 to paint the steps of City Hall for Pride Month this year, following in the footsteps of many cities that had commissioned similar works. That vote should have been the end of it, but after some ire from a few community members, Council scheduled a follow-up Special Meeting to potentially reconsider it. I do not think we should be timid in declaring Kenmore a safe and inclusive city in the year 2023, so I lent some creative talents to help seal the deal. I snapped an updated photo of City Hall with the Pride Flag flying high, and designed the mockup above to help more realistically illustrate what the steps would look like once finished. I also produced some LOVE WINS t-shirts for several of us to wear to the meeting. It was a community lift, and thankfully, something worked — that night, four members of Council ( a majority ) indicated they weren't changing their vote, so the meeting was adjourned without any followup action, and the original 6-1 vote was maintained. Love affirmatively wins. 🏳️🌈
Initiatives were featured in the Kenmore Quarterly, Summer 2022, on page 9.
Initiative and referendums grant the power to the community to author new legislation ( or vote on things decided by Council, if there's disagreement ). In 2021, I discovered Kenmore was one of few local cities without this, so I co-founded the Kenmore Takes Initiative! campaign. We rallied the community, made the case, and ultimately won these important civic powers for every voter in Kenmore. It passed with a unanimous 7-0 vote, including a personal recognition from the Council dais:
After much strife, the Northshore Firefighters ultimately got the deal they wanted.
In 2021, three members of the local Northshore Fire Commission went rogue and tried to ram through a proposed merger — Prop 1 — that nobody wanted. It was soundly defeated, with 80% of residents ultimately voting No. Then that fall, the Commissioners attempted again to ram through another bad faith deal, so I helped turn out over 70 residents to the Commission meeting where the community spoke overwhelmingly against it. Inevitably, the rogue Commissioners ultimately caved, new Commissioners were voted in, and finally our local firefighters got the contract they wanted in February 2022.
We've got a lot of work ahead of us — here are a few areas of focus I intend to lead on:
My goal is to empower residents with more tools and levers for enacting local change. With a seat on City Council, I'll have a whole new purview for putting more power directly into the hands of our community. My approach is multi-faceted, spanning civic education, resident advocacy, legislative lobbying, and electoral work.
Kenmore deserves bold climate leadership from the dais to get on track with our carbon emissions goals, and commit concerted efforts towards environmental stewardship. My election to Kenmore City Council will bring with it, a seachange in momentum to City Hall, so we can tackle these crises head-on. We'll be the example other cities follow.
Emphasis on affordable — solutions that don't specifically, and adequately, address affordability should be evaluated accordingly, and we should look for the biggest possible wins. That said, there are many tools to help get us out of this crisis, and we should explore all options.
Our neighbors have continually come under attack. Across many diverse walks of life, we need to ensure every resident — & especially our marginalized community members — feels safe, supported, and free to enjoy all the spoils of what this nation was founded on: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Ally is a verb.
Note: this list is not exhaustive — and if you've got an issue you're fired up about, especially one you feel has been ignored, please do reach out! I would love to hear more about it: email@example.com
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