An American Story, Rooted in Monterey
Committed to Service
I grew up in a military family. My mom served in the Navy for 20 years so we moved around the country and never lived anywhere long enough to grow roots. My military upbringing was a formative experience, and led me to seek long-term connections and community on the beautiful Monterey Peninsula.
For the last eight years, I have worked at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS). I also earned a bachelor’s degree from Cal State Monterey Bay in 2013. Currently, I am enrolled in a Master’s of Business Administration program at NPS.
When I arrived here on the Central Coast, I didn’t know how much this area would mean to me. I realized that I had finally found a community that accepted and loved me; I knew I’d never want to live anywhere else. My partner, Ivan and I bought our first home together in Monterey because of the beautiful environment — from the climate and landscape to the amazing community activists I’ve grown to love as my family. Through my community work on the Monterey Peninsula, I have truly found a lifelong home. My work with fellow community members was fundamental in the decision to run for Monterey City Council.
I have a proven track record of bringing people of diverse backgrounds together to accomplish common goals. As an organizer for President Obama’s re-election campaign out of the San Francisco headquarters, I was proud to manage a staff of 30 and over 500 volunteers in a successful endeavor.
More recently, I worked to bring that same sense of purpose as a co-founder of Monterey Peninsula Pride, the first pride event in this community for over a decade. This unifying and inclusive event enjoyed support from diverse community organization such as churches, synagogues, LGBTQIA+ organizations, legal groups, healthcare groups, mental health organizations and numerous public officials. It was a powerful event, with over 700 people in attendance united by our commitment of respect for all — and regional solidarity!
Click HERE to read Political up-and-comers team up to tackle the housing crisis with a regional approach.
Founding members of the Monterey Regional Housing Coalition include, from left to right: Tyller Williamson, Dionne Ybarra, Wendy Root Askew (an MPUSD board member), Ian Oglesby, Jon Wizard and Alison Kerr.
Now is the Time
We are approaching a pivotal moment for our region. There are critical decisions that elected officials must make in the coming years that will impact the long-term sustainability of our community. As a member of the Monterey County Housing Advisory Committee, and the City of Monterey Architecture Review Committee, I have seen firsthand the difference an active community makes. I support public control of our utilities, including our water and energy supply, but such a system only works with the voices of an engaged community. As a city councilmember, I will work tirelessly to foster, grow, and encourage productive civic participation.
I envision a future for our city as a leader in public engagement. By better utilizing modern forms of communication, we can “Move Monterey Forward” by seeking robust community input to drive decision making in our local government.
On important challenges like increasing access to affordable housing, improving transportation infrastructure, and providing a sustainable water supply, Monterey is not alone. I will collaborate with regional partners to tackle these tough issues, and improve our quality of life on the Central Coast.