Why Run for Board?

As a new member of the UMN Como Student Community Cooperative (CSCC) and as a current Graduate student studying Social Work, I ran to work with the board and community members in assisting the creation of innovative thoughts to make Southeast Como a livable place for everyone. Serving on the board, I can provide additional resources, perspective, and leadership to enhance the living experience for all residents who inhabit within the Southeast Como neighborhood. – Quinn Oteman, Current Board Member

I got involved with SECIA because Minneapolis has been my home for a long time. I love my city and my neighborhood and I want to do whatever I can to help make it a better place to live. SECIA membership provides that opportunity. I believe that, if we want to change the country, we should start with our neighborhoods. I believe that the most successful cities of the future will be those that are safe, clean, culturally diverse and easy to move around in. Minneapolis still has work to do and it starts with our neighborhoods. I ran to help work towards those goals. Three ideas inform my “political” life: (1) We are all in this together, (2) From the Stoics: do not waste time and energy on things over which you have no control (cannot change); focus on those things over which you have control (can change), and (3) If you want to change the world, first change yourself-be the change you want to see. I have lived in the Como neighborhood for a total of 25 years. – Jim Nyberg, Current Board Member and Vice President

I ran for the board because I believe in giving back to your community and working with a team to make sure we have/maintain a healthy and positive environment for our residents. Through my experience working in the Off-Campus Living Office at the University of Minnesota, serving as the board president for the Brook Avenue Housing Cooperative, and as the Greater Dinkytown Initiative Intern I have learned how positive the impact of community engagement has on the neighborhood and I have the leadership expertise to assist the board in serving that positivity. I am looking to help bring more perspectives to the board by encouraging community members’ involvement in events and gathering feedback so the board can identify issues relevant to the community faster and initiate change residents are looking for. By working together and fostering a collaborative setting we can build a stronger neighborhood! -Sloane MacSwain, Board member 2019-2020

I am a lifelong resident of the SE Como community and have been active for many years in the work of the neighborhood. I bring historic knowledge of Como’s participation in the City’s programs that provided the funding to our neighborhood which has allowed us to accomplish great things in our community and win various awards for our work over the years. I also look forward to helping the SECIA board transition to a new generation of neighborhood activists, better documenting the work of the board and neighborhood volunteers and supporting the efforts to increase community engagement opportunities. – Wendy Menken, Current Board Member and Treasurer

Southeast Como has been my home for almost 50 years and it has been a great place to live, especially given the close proximity to the University of Minnesota where I worked for over 40 years. After I retired, I got more involved in neighborhood projects, especially the community native prairie pollinator gardens, and saw first-hand the immense value of this volunteer work. At the urging of a former Executive Director and my wife, Lila M. Smith, I decided to run for the board and give back to the community to the best of my ability. – Karl Smith, Current Board Member and Board President