Short run was worth it |

Short run was worth it

After thoughtful reflection, I have made the decision to withdraw my candidacy for the Aspen City Council.

I am grateful for all the unanticipated support and enthusiasm of friends and new acquaintances who felt, as I do, that some changes in leadership, policy and programs are urgent if we are to move forward together.

It has been a strenuous but reassuring experience to find so many caring and thoughtful people who very frankly expressed their opinions and views.

I hope that my many supporters will cast their votes for Lisa Markalunas and Rachel Richards, who share my deeply-held views on how to preserve the character and spirit of this special place we call home.

Bringing an experienced, senior voice to our contentious problems, I believed, would help foster civility, calmer deliberations, mutual respect and result in more participatory democracy. I think that my efforts have had a positive effect in that direction.

I am also pleased to have had productive discussions with city officials about issues I care about, and assurances that they would be seriously considered and acted upon.

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Other goals, I think, will come closer to realization through my collaboration with Lisa and Rachel. Of course, it would also be very helpful to have Terry Paulson as the new mayor and a newly composed City Council less devoted to the manners and manors of the wealthy, and more concerned about the pressing housing, transportation, medical care and other needs of struggling, stretched-out, stressed-out folks.

I very much intend to stay involved in the political process, and to continue to be a voice for the people who have no access to or influence with Aspen’s mayor, council representatives or expanding bureaucracy.

My warmest thanks go to all those who have made my short run both stimulating and promising.

Vitashka Kirshen