Darlene_collins_riorancho

Darlene for America
Endorsement Applicant
City Council 2nd District of Rio Rancho New Mexico in NM

3054 Logan Meadows Dr NE
Rio Rancho, NM
87144

Public Phone Number: 505-720-2579
Public Email: [email protected]

Primary Election Date: 2014-01-07
General Election Date: 2014-03-04

Who am I?

I am a small business owner of a job training center, and a Gulf War veteran with extensive leadership experience as a USAF officer, line supervisor, customer service manager and general manager, training manager, project manager and performance consultant. I have a PhD in Education and a Master’s Degree in Management. I’ve lived in Rio Rancho, NM for nearly 12 years and have worked for both large and small corporations. I’m a professional treatment foster parent and a contract instructor for CNM our local community college. I am a published author of two books on fear and stress management, and I’m passionate about empowering others to be more self-sufficient. The strengths I bring to the Rio Rancho City Council include my enthusiasm for getting results through collaborative efforts, my resourcefulness in solving big problems, and my focus on empowering citizens through education, diversity and balance.

Why am I running?

I was encouraged to run by one of my neighbors and a good friend. She has admirably been more politically active than I have, and we were discussing the need for more real jobs since our local Intel factory announced the layoff of over 400 workers. We also had a common sense discussion on the need for a more a balanced approach to address the tight funding of our city budget for roads, public safety, and our city employees have been on hold for regular raises. The current district councilor is not running for reelection which leaves a vacancy to be filled. With more encouragement, I attended a council meeting, reviewed the minutes and video footage of various sessions, and reviewed our city charter. I decided I was well qualified for the job, but asked myself if I had the time and passion to jump into the fray of running for an elected office. I have a business to run and family obligations which I take very seriously. I prayed and talked it over with my husband, and he did not hesitate to spur me on. I believe in active citizenship and community involvement, so I attended a democratic club meeting. When they announced that it was time for those who wanted to run for election to nominate themselves with a short speech. I found myself proudly stepping forward and the excitement began to build. I am walking the walk of an engaged citizen. I am offering my service to my community, and when elected I’m committed to doing the best I can to represent their needs and interests and to work collaboratively with other local policy makers. I want to maintain the great things about our city and work to improve the things that we the people care about in making our city a great place to live.

My Goals

The areas I can serve the best are to focus on economics, education, and energy.
First, we need to get our economic development agency back to work on creating jobs and promoting how Rio Rancho is such a great place to live and work. I support policies that expand our tax base by attracting new residents and small businesses. We also need to tap into our existing people resources, keep our teachers employed, and find viable employment options for citizens of all abilities and experience levels. I would support give our city workers a regular raise and a plan to expand our “buy Rio Rancho” campaign to attract more small retail stores and neighborhood markets so we can keep more of our money within the city.
Second, I believe it is important, especially in today’s political environment, to educate our citizens. Maintaining a great school system and getting more youth engaged in keeping our city clean, viable, and fun is essential. I was pleased to see our citizens voted to continue supporting our higher education infrastructure with the current level of taxes. I would support initiatives that address more job training to ensure we have the workforce to support business growth. We must also educate ourselves as responsible residents on the issues that we face and in finding ways to resolve the challenges of self-governance.
Third, developing ways to have sustainable sources of energy is another policy area I want to focus attention on. Creating incentives for water conservation, solar use, additional recycling efforts, and to expand clean city transportation are as important to our city as attracting clean commerce and industry. That means we all have to be willing to participate and work together.
I am committed to representing the voices in our community and ensuring they are heard on critical decisions like how to raise money for roads, how to give our city employees a raise, how to preserve our natural resources, and keep our neighborhoods safe but I expect the residents in my district to speak up and commit to stepping up their own involvement a notch. Together we can.

My DFA Values

I support the values of community, security, and liberty.
To develop community, I feel it is imperative to raise citizen awareness of the opportunities and challenges we face in running and growing our city. I want to know what people in my community think good citizenship and self-governance looks like. People are more than their political viewpoints. My neighbors have real needs and concerns. We cannot fix everything at once but we can work together to set priorities and make progress. I serve on a few boards of non-profit veteran service organizations, I belong to the chamber of commerce, I teach at a community college, and my work as a profession parent of treatment foster children is focused on service to the community. Community means together we can.
To support security on the local level means to look for ways to reduce crime and safety issues in our neighborhoods while at the same time increasing peace and tranquility. Everyone has the right to feel safe and enjoy peacefulness in their home, neighborhood, and public areas. I want to keep our crime rate down by making sure our first responders and police force have adequate staffing and state-of-the-art radios and other equipment. To maintain the safety and well-being of our community, I support working with county and state agency’s to build a progressive youth detention facility with holistic services that help support the juvenile’s physical, emotional, and social development while protecting the youth and community from further harm.
In support of liberty, we must all accept some limitations on our liberties in order to get along with other people and our environment so we can maintain good order and discipline in our community. The US Constitution lists the civil liberties (rights and freedoms) we all agree with at the basic level. In taking a position to represent the people of my district in public service, I want to represent their views in all my decisions. The citizens I represent have a right to know my predisposition on various issues. I will briefly address three of the often-debated civil liberties. I support legislation that protects the reproductive rights of women and their ability to choose. Even for a late term abortion I yield to the mother and her doctor, especially when she is late into a wanted pregnancy when there is a sudden threat to the life and health of the mother. I support legislation that promotes the equality of marriage as a civil contract between two consenting adults. I support legislation that protects our right to keep and bear arms, but do not think high capacity clips or military style weapons should be allowed in the general public. On any given issues my main concern is to collaborate with other city officials and staff to wisely use our available resources to create the best solutions for our city.

My Campaign is People Powered!

I believe grassroots community effort means face-to-face contact. I want to personally knock on every door in my district and respectfully ask for their vote. I have a small team willing to door knock with me and for me and others who can make phone calls and spread the word that we need more help. For those willing to chat, I will listen to what they see as our city’s pressing needs and continue the dialog and feedback throughout my term. I will ask for volunteers to help us get fired up and ready to serve our community. Some will be able to do tiny acts while other may be able to help with larger plans. My outreach efforts will be targeted to trusted locations to get folks involved in common sense self-government. I will challenge residents in my district to commit to attending at least one council meeting per year (out of 26 available) and give me feedback. Attendance and feedback can be done in person or online. I will use internet and social media as the main type of technology to help me get elected and stay informed on what the stakeholders in my district need from me. As a business owner and manager I believe people will rise to all performance expectations they are capable of—as leaders we must make our goals clear, provide access to and be creative with limited resources to get results.

Voice support

Supporters:

  • John Jones


About the Endorsement Process

The driving force behind all DFA endorsements is our members. We recognize that all politics is local and that what is considered progressive in Los Angeles may be very different from what's considered progressive in Louisville. For this reason, DFA does not have a litmus test of specific progressive positions for which a candidate must stand. Our endorsement is heavily weighted based on these questions:

• Will the candidate move the progressive movement forward in their community?
• Does the candidate have substantial support from our local members?
• Do the candidate's positions and policies fit into the broader progressive movement?
• Is the campaign people-powered and the candidate working to win?

If you have questions, or want to let us know about a candidate in your neighborhood, please call us at (802) 651-3200 or email us at [email protected] .

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