For those of us who care about our downtown and surrounding neighborhoods, the upcoming Phoenix City Council elections are important. We are electing a new District 8 Council Member who, together with Mayor Greg Stanton and Councilman Michael Nowakowski of District 7, will represent one of our state’s most important assets: Downtown Phoenix. A new Council Member will also be elected in District 4, representing many of our city’s historic residential neighborhoods that adjoin downtown.

Who will represent greater downtown? Photo courtesy of City of Phoenix.

Downtown Phoenix and Sky Harbor International Airport (also in District 8) are the front door to our community. These places reflect our aspirations as a region and state, and portray our energy, diversity, and vitality. Past leaders have done their part to build universities, arenas, parks, public art, convention centers, performing arts venues, and office towers while striving to stabilize and enhance our adjoining residential neighborhoods. Significant success has been achieved, but there is still much work to be done.

“Your voice is essential…your active engagement in our electoral process…is important to our collective success as a downtown.”

Now, a new group of leaders has stepped to the forefront to energize downtown through their creativity, entrepreneurship, artistic endeavors, and continued neighborhood activism. Some of them are builders in the tradition of prior leaders and others focus on building the most interesting and diverse community in Phoenix, the sixth largest city in the nation. ALL are required to help move us forward.

Through Downtown Phoenix, Inc., our new downtown umbrella organization, I get to work hand-in-hand with a broad spectrum of individuals and organizations committed to downtown. Current DPI board members include leaders from Alliance Bank, Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Latino Arts and Cultural Center, Arizona Public Service, City of Phoenix, Downtown Voices Coalition, Local First Arizona, Phoenix Suns, RED Development, Roosevelt Row Community Development Corporation, and United Healthcare.  The willingness of the established business leadership to work collaboratively with leaders of our community based organizations and city government bodes well for our future.

Your voice is essential, too; as a resident, business owner, student, and/or volunteer, Downtown deserves the best civic, business, and elected leadership our community can provide. No matter who you support, your active engagement in our electoral process – learning about each candidate and their stances on issues of concern to you, weighing your choices, and then marking your ballot – is important to our collective success as a downtown.

Learn more:

• The candidates for Phoenix City Council: The Arizona Republic questionnaire

• Key voting dates: City Clerk Department

• Find your City Council District: Council District Map

• Register to vote: Online registration for Maricopa County