Anna Jones, vice president at P.U.M.A. and my professional colleague of nearly 15 years, is a candidate for the open City Council seat in District 10 of Denver. Anna entered the race after the progressive candidate, Roger Sherman, unexpectedly withdrew.
We whole-heartedly support Anna in her candidacy, and interestingly, I can speak to this from a variety of perspectives. While I have worked with Anna for nearly 15 years, I have also known her family for more than 40. Her older sister was my locker partner at Manual High School and a prom date of mutual convenience (it’s a long story). Anna’s Mom, of Swedish descent, raised three daughters in east Denver largely as a single parent. Each of the daughters has an outstanding career, each is at the top of their respective fields, and each has created wonderful families.
I am also a native of Denver and a 23-year resident of District 10, therefore Anna’s candidacy is a mixed blessing. On one hand, we will miss her terribly at P.U.M.A., but on the other hand she would be an outstanding leader not just for District 10, but for the city as-a-whole. Here’s why I’m super enthusiastic about Anna’s quest and why you should be too:
Qualifications: Anna could not have a better resume for public office, particularly in a time of development pressure that will shape our city for decades to come. For the past 15 years at P.U.M.A., Anna has evolved into one of the most competent community development professionals in the state. The nature of our field is to balance economic vitality and quality of life within diverse communities – downtowns, neighborhoods and commercial corridors. Anna has excelled in our work – she has a unique ability to listen to all sides and then develop solutions that address a variety of complex factors. Couple her inherent skills with her civic experience – seven years as a Denver Planning Commissioner, co-chair of the committee that developed Main Street zoning along Colfax, recipient of Historic Denver’s prestigious Molly Brown Award, and the list goes on.
Forward-Thinking: Anna will bring a forward-thinking attitude to District 10 and a balanced perspective that we desperately need in order to shape the best community possible. Anna understands all of the factors that create communities – outstanding parks, schools, walkable and bikeable streets, plus the need to create jobs and housing options that offer a wide spectrum of people a shot at their share of the American Dream. She is looking to improve this community for the future and, with two teenage sons, has a big stake in doing so.
Passion and Connection: District 10 will not find a more passionate champion. Anna lives and breathes community, and she has advocated for a variety of causes. Prior to her work with us at P.U.M.A., Anna worked in Sri Lanka for the Peace Corps, teaching English and helping to improve a distant part of the world while in her 20s. It is there that she met her husband Asanga, and together they have raised two boys that currently attend Denver Public Schools. Many of her causes have related to her family, from fund-raising at Teller Elementary to helping Asanga create and capitalize a charity that built houses for the homeless after the tsunami battered his homeland.
Bottom line, and I know I’m biased and say this at some personal risk to my business, there is no better choice for District 10 or for Denver. No one will work more tirelessly for our city, with passion, balance, intelligence, integrity and honesty, than Anna Jones. Please join me and the P.U.M.A. team in supporting Anna’s candidacy for Denver City Council.
You can visit her website, learn more and support Anna at www.annajonesdenver.com.