When Supervisor Kondylis told me last summer that she was thinking about retiring and that she wanted me to consider running for her seat, I was excited. It was a new opportunity to take everything I'd learned over the last six years and put that to use at the County level while still working for Vallejo. I was honored in Supervisor Kondylis' faith in me.
So I spent a lot of time thinking about it, talking to my friends and family and my supporters. I was somewhat surprised to hear some of my staunchest supporters ask me not to run for Supervisor -- they really wanted me to stay on the City Council for as long as I could. It was an odd sort of flattery, I have to say!
I realized that my decision wasn't about my skills or qualifications, or even my personal desires for my career. In the end, my decision really came down to two things: re-writing a story, and my sense of responsibility.
In the dark of the night when sleep can be so elusive when faced with important decisions, I asked myself what was best for Vallejo. As a senior councilmember with six years of intense learning and experience under my belt, would my leaving the City Council before my term is up hurt the forward momentum we as a community have so painstakingly made?
We are on the brink of a hard-earned recovery, we have a City Council that is working well together, and we have a strong new city manager coming on board soon -- there is a bright light at the end of what has been a long and difficult tunnel. But our recovery is sill tenuous and will require experienced leadership and guidance. I worked too hard to help get us to this point to leave right before we turn that corner. Our story is still unfinished, and I want to stay and help finish re-writing it.
And during those sleepless nights, I also felt a nagging sense of guilt about leaving my term early. Two years ago, I asked the voters of Vallejo to re-elect me. I made a commitment, promised to work hard and focus on addressing Vallejo's serious challenges. The voters put their faith and trust in me for a second time – even in the middle of our bankruptcy turmoil – and I want to respect that trust and honor my commitment by completing my full term.
So once I made my decision not to run for Supervisor, it all became very clear. It was the right choice. In my heart, I want to stay and keep working. I didn't run for public office to start a new career, I ran because I believe in citizen representation and I thought I could help our city. And the best place for the city and me right now is right where I am.