The responses to these questions were edited for length and clarity by the Georgia Decides team. Each candidate was allotted 150 words for each answer and some answers were trimmed in order to abide by that length requirement. Other edits were made to make sure readers can fully follow and understand the candidate responses.
Campaigning for: Fulton County Commission District 3
How does your background equip you for the job you are seeking?
As a single mother and business owner, I’ve learned how to be efficient, how to budget, how to spend wisely, and how to compromise. My experience working in technology taught me to understand and solve complex problems and my years in the media allowed me to hone my communication skills.
But perhaps most importantly, I can relate to the people I seek to represent. I’ve lived in metro Atlanta since college and in Fulton County for most of my 34+ years here, and I’ve experienced a lot: I’ve been married, divorced, and a single mom. I’ve worked in corporate America. I’ve been unemployed. I’ve changed careers. I’ve owned small businesses. I’ve volunteered. I’ve had successes and I’ve struggled financially at times. I’ve had breast cancer and medical debt. I’ve had student loans; my daughter has student loans. I’ve rented apartments and owned homes. I’ve been underpaid, and I’ve experienced discrimination.
What role should government have in the lives of Georgians? How would you apply that philosophy to the job you are seeking?
The most basic role of government is to protect its citizens. I believe this includes protection from violence, protection of our rights and freedoms, protection from discrimination, economic protection, and protection of privacy. Government also has a role as a provider of services that cannot easily be provided for individually (e.g. roads, infrastructure), services that benefit the entire community (e.g. education, public health, transportation), and services for citizens who find themselves in vulnerable situations (e.g. youth, old age, sickness, disability and unemployment due to economic forces beyond their control). I do not believe the government has the right to interfere in the private lives of citizens, be it their medical decisions or their choice of whom to marry or who to love.
When elected, I will prioritize the protections and services most needed by the county while pushing back on the current overreach of government into our private lives.
If you are elected (or re-elected), what problems will you spend the most time solving and why?
Protecting The Vote: I will vote to fully fund the Fulton County Elections Board so that they can provide fair, accessible, secure elections that are as above reproach as possible. This is critical if we want to defend the integrity of our elections and avoid a state takeover.
Public Health including Women’s Reproductive Health: I will work to ensure that every woman in Fulton County has access to medical and reproductive care. I will also be focused on funding for Grady, and working with the cities, and surrounding counties to address the disastrous closure of hospitals we have seen this past year.
Equal Justice & Public Safety: I will support programs that keep first-time, non-violent offenders out of jail, and I will fully fund our DA and work with her and our sheriff on case backlogs and diversion programs to create a more equitable justice system and a safer community.
Georgia is a politically diverse state. How will you work to represent Georgians whose political views differ from your own?
I am running for Fulton County Commission because I believe we deserve leaders at all levels who will choose people over politics, and who will put the needs of all citizens before their own political self-interests. Fulton County voters should not have to choose between keeping our tax rates down and taking care of our community; we can do both. My fiscally responsible and socially inclusive approach is about working toward a more efficient and effective government that is able to provide the protections and services needed for the good of the whole community.
Who has been the biggest influence on how you view government and politics? What have you learned from this person?
The day that Donald Trump was elected, I cried. Of course I was saddened that we would not have our first woman president, but the tears were out of fear for the future of our country. That day shifted my view on my personal responsibility as a citizen for the future of our democracy and shifted the trajectory of my career from business talk radio host to political talk radio host and then to candidate for public office. Donald Trump’s win in 2016 taught me that we cannot take our freedoms for granted. His presidency showed me the terrifying reality of a self-serving leader who used lies and fear mongering to gin up hate and further divide our country. That reality became abundantly clear on Jan. 6,, 2021 and fortified my resolve to stand up and speak up for what is right, and to lead with honesty and transparency.
Politics is often about compromise. How do you decide when to compromise and take small, incremental wins, and when to refuse compromise?
The job of the Fulton County Commission is predominantly to decide how to allocate our $1.25 billion dollar budget. As commissioners, we must weigh the needs of people across a large geographic region with varied needs, and prioritize spending so that the most critical services are funded adequately and with equity across the county. In order to come to agreement on the annual budget, compromise is key. I will be open to compromising on dollar amounts allocated and timelines planned for projects such that we are serving the most people in the best possible way, and will be open to hearing all sides before making a decision. That said, I am not willing to compromise my values on issues, policies, or budget items related to protecting our elections, public health, human rights, reproductive rights, public safety, or equitable justice.
There were politicians who questioned the outcomes of Georgia elections in 2018 and 2020. Do you think Georgia’s elections are secure and will you stand by the results?
Yes, I think Georgia’s elections are secure and I will stand by the results. Protecting voting rights and election integrity is one of the key reasons I am running for office. Fulton County’s elections have been and will continue to be a major target of the far right’s baseless claims of election fraud.
As an elected member of the Fulton County Commission I am committed to making sure all eligible Fulton County voters have equal access to fair and secure elections. I will fully fund our Board of Elections so that they have the necessary resources to provide a full range of voting options, extended hours, and easily accessible locations along with the staff, training, and equipment to secure our votes and protect us from the threat of a state takeover.
In light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on abortion, state law and local enforcement authority will determine access to abortion. If elected, how will you use your authority to influence abortion access or enforcement of abortion restrictions?
As the next Fulton County Commissioner representing District 3 I will be a vocal advocate of reproductive rights and I will work to ensure that Fulton is a safe haven for women seeking reproductive services and the medical professionals who provide them. I am also committed to ensuring that every woman in Fulton County who needs it can have no-cost access to family planning, birth control and the morning after pill.
In addition, I will stand with Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis in her decision not to prosecute abortion cases.