In an effort to better acquaint Tulsa citizens with their elected officials, the League has launched a “Getting to Know” initiative. Today, we are featuring Anna America, who was elected as City Councilor for District 7 in November of 2014.
What is your agenda as City Councilor for 2015?
To make sure the issues and concerns of District 7 are represented and addressed, and that overall as a city we are operating as efficiently and effectively as possible. Some of the major District 7 issues on the list so far: Streets — ensuring we have good streets that adequately deal with the growth we are seeing in some areas, particularly along Mingo Road, and that we use all the tools at our disposal (street widening, better traffic signalization, etc.) to help South Tulsans get around safely and efficiently as possible; Public Safety — as we look at a possible Public Safety initiative, one priority will be in ensuring we include support for improving “neighborhood safety” — things like auto break-ins, burglaries, etc., that plague many of our neighborhoods, and that we also do a better job of reducing traffic accidents — 7 of the top 10 most dangerous intersections in the city are in District 7, and that needs to be improved; Business — working with neighborhoods and the business community to strengthen and support the aging retail areas in the District so they can continue to thrive (and generate the sales tax that supports the city!).
What 3 changes will citizens see under your leadership as City Councilor?
More communication with and engagement of District 7 citizens — I am holding regular Town Halls for citizens to voice their concerns, have established a District 7 Facebook page and send a monthly email; Better representation for District 7 on issues; Strong advocate citywide on a number of issues, including neighborhoods, retail business and working collaboratively with schools.
What is the biggest issue that Tulsa is facing?
For city government, declining sales tax revenue (the primary method of funding city operations), which has resulted in reductions in key services (public safety, streets maintenance, parks, etc.).
What about Tulsa makes you the most proud?
Hands down the people. We might disagree on specific issues, but we are a resilient, funny, generous, hard-working and friendly group that will come together to solve problems and help one another.
Why did you choose to pursue public office?
I want to do what I can to make sure that Tulsa is the best it can be, and remains the kind of place I want my kids to grow up in — and maybe choose to live in themselves as adults.
On the weekend, you can find me:
Usually at some kind of sports field — both my kids play competitive soccer; my 13-year-old daughter also plays volleyball and soccer for Carver Middle School, and my 16-year-old son plays soccer and football for Booker T. Washington High School.
What is your favorite spot in Tulsa?
My backyard on a nice evening hanging out with my family and friends.
What songs would be find on your playlist?
Crazy mix that changes week to week. The last 5 songs I called up: “It’s a Wonderful World,” Eva Cassidy version; “Honey I’m Good,” Andy Grammer, “FourFive Seconds” Rihanna, Kanye West and Paul McCartney; “Werewolves of London,” Warren Zevon; and “Raise Your Glass,” Pink.
If your day had 25 hours, what would you use the extra hour for:
Catching up on email!
Words to live by:
So many great sayings! My favorite this week: “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” –Dr. Suess