Dave Asher, Candidate for Kirkland City Council

Dave Asher (incumbent)

Kirkland City Council Position 6

Party affiliation: The office is non-partisan, and there aren't any partisan potholes or sidewalks. I am a Democrat. Occupation: City Council Member Occupational background: Retired Army Lieutenant Colonel (Attack Helicopter and Air Cavalry commander) Retired Chief Financial Officer, UW Professional & Continuing Education Educational background: MS (with 4.0 GPA) Logistics Management BS (with honors) Business Administration Organizational affiliations:

  • State Board of Directors, Transportation Choices Coalition
  • Secretary, Eastside TimeBank
  • Co-founder and convener, Kirkland Conversations
  • Member, Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce
  • Founding Member, Eastside Business Association
  • Life Member, Sierra Club
  • Life Member, Military Officers Association of America
  • Life Member, Washington Arms Collectors
  • Member, Washington Conservation Voters
  • Member, Washington Environmental Council
  • Member, Cascade Land Conservancy
  • Member, Futurewise
  • Member, Nature Conservancy
  • Member, KUOW
  • Former Member, Council on Finance and Administration, United Methodist Church, Pacific Northwest Conference; former chair, Audit Committee
  • Former President, Partnerships Foundation, supporting Lake Washington schools
  • Former Steering Committee Member, Kirkland Interfaith Transitions in Housing Community Supper
  • Former Member, Kirkland Interfaith Network
  • Former Secretary, Standing Ovation (an Eastside foundation supporting the arts)

Prior Public Experience:

  • Regional Law, Safety and Justice Committee (former chair & current member)
  • Kirkland City Council's Public Safety Committee (founding chair & current member)
  • Kirkland City Council's Legislative Committee (current member)
  • Kirkland City Council's Ethics Committee (current member)
  • King County Emergency Medical Services Advisory Task Force - Kirkland representative (2011-13)
  • Former Chair, Performance Audit Committee examining Sound Transit
  • Former Trustee, Cascadia Community College Foundation
  • Former Executive Committee Member, Washington State Dept. of Transportation, SR 520 Bridge Replacement and HOV Project
  • Former Member, Sound Transit, Executive Advisory Committee for Kirkland Projects
  • Former Member, Metro Transit's Eastside Sounding Board
  • Former Member, A Regional Coalition for Housing (ARCH) Citizen's Advisory Board
  • Former Member Kirkland's Ad Hoc Transportation Committee
  • Army officer, Lieutenant to Lieutenant Colonel

Email: Dave@DaveAsher.org Websitewww.daveasher.org

 

1.  WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN THE CITY YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?
Successfully addressing the annexation and making services equitable across the entire city is the most important issue that we must undertake.  It will take us nearly a decade to work through and achieve that balance throughout Kirkland, but we have already started.  As a former neighborhood association chair of an annexed part of Kirkland, I know that it takes a long time and a lot of involvement by residents to get things integrated properly.
Kirkland annexed new residents equal to 2/3 it previous population.  The 12th most populace city is larger than 26 of Washington's counties; however we can't retrench to bureaucracy as the answer to handling this much larger challenge.  It is imperative that we maintain our tradition of an understanding and responsive local government.  There are NO 2nd-class residents of Kirkland.
Kirkland's city government must aim to be successful with ALL residents.
-  Success requires ALL resident to feel they are being listened to respectfully.
-  Success means ALL residents have a sense of empowerment, so they actually have a say in shaping the decisions of Kirkland.
-  Success also means ALL residents view their local government as caring and responsive.
This is One Kirkland.  The city must go the extra mile to ensure that existing ways of doing business are reevaluated in light of the new context; and responsive, local government must be maintained with a much larger and more diverse citizenry.
2.  WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

a.Economic recovery and economic development must be more effective to provide us the foundation to prosper as a city.  The benefits of a vibrant economy make possible many things we want to do in Kirkland, such as: parks maintenance, park improvements, infrastructure support, and many neighborhood amenities that are unachievable without strong business contributions.  We must thrive economically to achieve many community goals.

b.Improving our system of performance management is key to better accountability and transparency in knowing what our city government is doing and how well it accomplishes the important tasks.  The city has worked on developing a system for far too long.  We have recently begun to make progress toward establishing good outcome measures for the work our tax dollars fund.  We need a meaningful performance management system that helps us measure how, and how much, we are progressing toward our community goals.  As we periodically review these measures and our results, we must check-in with the public to see if we are still headed in the right direction and doing the right things.

One driving need for increased performance and accountability is the changing landscape at the county, state, and federal levels.  As these other levels of government retreat from responsibilities they have previously supported, local governments have no one to pass the buck to.  For example, when the county prosecutor says he will no longer prosecute cases involving theft less than $10,000, the local jurisdiction is left with the responsibility and has little say in the matter, if we think bringing offenders to justice is important.  We will see many other instances like this in coming years.

3.  WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

I have a lifetime as a leader facing challenging situations.  My career in the Regular Army provided me with an outstanding grounding in the nobility of public service.  My career at the University of Washington as an analyst, finance director, and chief financial officer has provided me with solid experience in performance budgeting in tough situations.  My experience on the City Council has given me a great breadth and depth of knowledge of where, and how, we want to improve even in the face of dramatic budget cuts.
I have much experience in dealing with the challenges to come.  Having experience as a neighborhood association leader after annexation, I have walked in similar shoes to those of today's neighborhood leaders.  I know how it feels to have the bureaucracy seemingly disregard the residents, and those are unforgettable lessons that I don't want others to have to experience.
My experience in dealing with significant organizational change in the military, and to a lesser extent at UW, gives me an appreciation of the challenges facing our much larger city.  Having worked from within the city structure for some time, I can assist in bringing the needs and capabilities together for real solutions - solutions to fix the system not just today's issue.
I have fought for more responsive and more accountable city government since I have been on the council.  We are making progress, and I can contribute to continuing the improvements.

KIRKLAND CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATES

 

Bob Sternoff Jason Gardiner Jessica Greenway Toby Nixon

Bob Sternoff [ 2, MB, I ]

Jason Gardiner [ 2, KG ]

Jessica Greenway [ 4, NK, I ]

Toby Nixon [ 4, KG ]

Dave Asher Jim Hart

Dave Asher [ 6, NRH, I ]

Jim Hart [ 6, HN ]