District 1

Name: Signe Lindell

Age: 66

Occupation: City Councilor

Education: Doctorate of Education

Family: Maria Sanchez, partner for 26 years

Government/Political Experience: Santa Fe City Councilor; Mayor  Pro Tem; Finance Committee; Public Works Committee. Previously served as chairwoman of Business and Quality of Life, SWAMA, Metropolitan Planning Board, Public Utilities, Planning Commission, Summary Committee, Rules and Ethics Committee.

Community Service Activities: I have attended hundreds of community events and participated in raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for community nonprofits. I am well known to many nonprofits and community organizations as always being willing to help and participate.

Questions and Answers:

1. Why are you running, and what skills do you hope to bring, or continue to bring, to the City Council?

Answer: I’m running for re-election because I care. My best skill to serve the people of Santa Fe is the ability to listen. Listen to all sides, listen to the frustrated constituent. Listen to my fellow councilors. Listening, combined with my experience and relationships gained over seven and a half years as a councilor, allows me to resolve issues. It all begins with just listening. Constituents and residents know me as someone who answers them and works tirelessly to solve their issues. I address more constituent issues than all other councilors combined. One of my skills is the ability to build consensus with city staff and other councilors. Legislatively, I have been successful because I research the issues and work with other councilors to ensure passage.

2. What do you consider the biggest issue facing Santa Fe, and how do you intend to address it?

Answer: Currently the No. 1 issue facing the city is the same issue facing all businesses and other municipalities — hiring and staffing. Without having fully staffed departments, we cannot properly address the important issues, such as water and affordable housing. Initially this looked like a short-term problem, but the predictions are that this will be a longer term issue. We need to pay competitively and provide a workplace that promotes worker satisfaction. Offering the best training available as well as paths for promotion is essential.

3. What is the biggest issue facing your district?

Answer: The issues I hear about daily is traffic – speeding, loud mufflers and homeless encampments. 

4. In 50 words or fewer, what is your opinion of (a) Alan Webber’s term as mayor and (b) the current City Council?

I will not supplant my opinion for that of the voters. Voters' opinions are the only ones that matter. I’ve worked with the administration and other councilors on important issues and found both to be willing to listen, learn and always help to move our city forward.

5. How should the city of Santa Fe approach development of the Midtown Campus? What are your ideas for the site?

I have always seen the site as a campus and that education would remain an anchor of the site. I hope for housing, technology and innovation, film and multimedia, job development and training. Everyone has heard me say the campus costs the city $8,000 per day, and we need to be diligent with our process. COVID has complicated the process, and the city, in my opinion, does not have the capacity to be a master developer. I believe Midtown needs to be a public-private partnership. I am supportive of moving forward with rezoning to allow the future uses. We face some very big decisions in terms of how much more money should we spend to update the deteriorated infrastructure. Many have suggested a new city hall at the site – it is the center of the city. By the end of the year, we should have the public input we need to make the decisions and move forward.

Name: Joe Hoback

Age: 63

Occupation: Retired (former president of Land of Enchantment Federal Credit Union)

Education: American Institute of Banking Management Certification

Family: Single father of two

Government Experience: City of Santa Fe Board of Adjustment; Economic Development Review Board; Mass Transit Advisory Board. State Senate legislative aide.

Community Service: Served on the board of directors at the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian; United Way of Santa Fe County; Santa Fe Chamber of Commerce; Santa Fe Crimestoppers; Leadership Santa Fe. Served as a big brother for Big Brothers and Big Sisters; was president of the Santa Fe Preparatory School Alumni Association; head soccer coach at the College of Santa Fe.

1. Why are you running, and what skills do you hope to bring to the City Council?

Answer: As a Native American whose family has been in Santa Fe for generations, I have always been taught that people helping people is life’s true reward. I will bring a diverse, professional background rooted in local businesses, along with over 40 years of community service, to the council. My experience has always focused on being proactive, not reactive. We must work together to solve the problems facing our community today, and I can bring healing and progress to a better Santa Fe.

2. What do you consider the biggest issue facing Santa Fe, and how do you intend to address it?

Answer: Our guiding principle must always be the health, safety and welfare of our citizens, our neighborhoods and our city. For years, we have seen a continued erosion of basic city services that are vital to keeping our streets safe and clean, an erosion of protecting our local environment and resources and an erosion of preserving our cultural heritages. I will bring a jobs program to Santa Fe that will improve city services. I will bring a  land-use plan that will better manage our future growth and water supply. I will work to build more housing that is truly affordable. I will bring our people together to heal the culture wounds we have suffered this past year.

3. What is the biggest issue facing your district?

Answer: We must protect and nurture our local neighborhoods, parks and public spaces. We continue to be inconsistent with providing basic services. I have knocked on over 1,000 doors, and the messages are clear. We want safe streets, clean parks and a focus on improving the quality of life for everyone. This means a city hall that can sweep the streets, remove the weeds, paint the crosswalks, reduce the noise pollution, and provide the best public safety measures we desperately need. We must always ensure that we have a fair, inclusive and equitable Santa Fe.

4. In 50 words or fewer, what is your opinion of (a) Alan Webber’s term as mayor and (b) the current City Council?

Answer: I have a different set of priorities in managing our city. We must first invest in our city’s workforce, which will improve important city services, which will go a long way to improving our way of life. We need leaders who will bring back what has made Santa Fe so special for generations. The City Council must take a stronger role in managing the legislative process of running the city. We must have councilors who will think outside of the box to address our community’s problems and councilors who do not automatically follow the lead of the current administration.

5. How should the city of Santa Fe approach the development of the Midtown Campus?

Answer: We must complete the review process currently being managed. Any plans must make affordable housing the No. 1 priority for future development. Building of these homes should follow the Habitat for Housing model or the Tierra Contenta model, with a focus on housing for city employees, teachers, and health care providers. We can build a healthy, vibrant midtown neighborhood using city, state, and federal funding programs. Once we begin building these homes, then we can attract green-based infill development to complete the campus. We must break ground on this important part of Santa Fe’s future in 2022, no more delays!

Name: Roger Carson 
 
Age: N/A
 
Occupation: Realtor 
 
Education: College of Santa Fe, bachelor's degree in accounting; master's degree in tourism administration, George Washington University.
 
Family: Married to Melissa Pippin-Carson. Father of three children.
 
Government/Political Experience: First run for public office.
 
Community Service Activities: Volunteer mediator, state Magistrate Courts; volunteer docent, Randall Davey Audubon Center & Sanctuary; president, Santa Fe Association of Realtors. Has served as team leader, St. John’s College Search & Rescue; board member of  the Santa Fe County Property Tax Protest Board, Vista Encantada Neighborhood Association and the Santa Fe Association of Realtors; chairman of the American Cancer Society Spring Gala 2010; event director, Kitchen Angels Run with the Angels 2003.
 
1. Why are you running, and what skills do you hope to bring, or continue to bring, to the City Council? 
 
Answer: I am running for City Council because I believe now is the time for new leadership and a fresh new approach to the many challenges that are holding us back. It’s clear that the road we are heading on is not solving the needs of our community. I bring an assortment of leadership skills to City Council, from being a Search & Rescue Team Leader to an elected president of a large trade organization. I am also a certified mediator and experienced negotiator, and I understand how to bring people together to get a job done.  I will bring to the position a proven record of success and more leadership experience than any of the other candidates. 
 
2.What do you consider the biggest issue facing Santa Fe, and how do you intend to address it?
Answer: Housing is the biggest issue, and our housing crisis is the intersection of many problems facing our city: from homelessness to affordability to urban sprawl. Providing for our most vulnerable citizens is a moral imperative. The lack of affordable housing displaces our local population and inhibits our economic development.  Urban sprawl negatively impacts our environment and clogs our neighborhood streets. First, I will address the Midtown Campus which has been sitting for five years, costing millions of dollars to our citizens each year.  The incumbent and others on the City Council have not treated this as an urgent issue, and I will. Further, the Midtown Link was designated as an Opportunity Zone in 2016, and, to date, nothing has happened. As your city councilor, I will get to work on creating a thriving development here for the future of Santa Feans. I will work to modernize and fully staff our land use department and update our outdated Comprehensive Building Plan to prevent the sprawl that is currently underway.  I will work for sustainable development of vibrant mixed-use affordable, walkable neighborhoods. When it comes to housing and housing issues, I bring more experience to the table than any of the other candidates. 

3. What is the biggest issue facing your district? 

Answer: The obelisk is in District 1 and symbolically the biggest issue facing my district and the city. Race and diversity are this nation’s unresolved dilemmas and an opportunity for Santa Fe to take a leading role. I hope for the return of the obelisk, rededicated to the freedom and justice of all New Mexicans, but while the CHART process is unfolding, I would engage our economic development department to create an annual conference on culture and race. This is our opportunity to advance a global dialogue of cultural and race relations. I believe that Santa Fe, while not perfect, is a shining example of tolerance and unity. This annual conference can host world leaders of all races and backgrounds to speak about justice, race, diversity, human rights, and culture and can grow in time to be the preeminent forum for addressing this dilemma. Our existing conference and tourism industry can readily support such a conference. The conversation about justice for all will never and should never end.  We can provide the global setting for it to take place.  

4. In 50 words or fewer, what is your opinion of (a) Alan Webber’s term as mayor and (b) the current City Council. 
 
As Santa Fe’s first strong mayor, it draws into question of whether a city as diverse as ours should have one person making unilateral decisions.
If we are going to have a strong mayor, then we need to have an even stronger City Council that is independent of the mayor. I believe that councilors should should come from local industries, serve the public and then go back to their industries, rather than become professional politicians. I believe term limits for city councilors would allow for more representation on the council and would make a better and stronger city government. 
 
5. How should the city of Santa Fe approach development of the Midtown Campus? What are your ideas for the site? 
 
We should approach this project as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us to do something extraordinary for the future of Santa Fe. There are many great examples of  cities taking on challenging infill projects like this and turning them into amazing communities. For instance, in Denver they transformed a defunct Stapleton Airport with its toxic landscape into an architectural and environmental award-winning community. Through the design charrette process with collaborative brainstorming, we can create something far better than any one of us could ever imagine, and now all we are missing is the leadership to bring it together and move it forward. 
 
My ideas for the site would be to continue to make Santa Fe as enjoyable for locals as it is to our visitors. I envision a modern City Center that would rival the quality of life that we have downtown. Let’s create the downtown experience in a modern development in Midtown. Let’s move City Hall to the Fogelson Library, along with other city services, such as a police substation, and around that create a vibrant mixed-use community accessible to all Santa Feans. The ready-made economy of local government would be a catalyst for shops, cafes, day care, and other business opportunities. In addition to the indoor movie theater, we could create an outdoor movie theater around a park-like setting for summer evenings reminiscent of the old drive-in-movies, only without our cars.  We could create a greenbelt surrounding the development that would serve as a pedestrian parkway. Housing within this mixed use community should be for rent and for sale, serving a variety of economic tiers which has proven to create the most viable neighborhoods. Through modern, sustainable building practices, such as community solar and rainwater recycling, this project could stand as an environmental and architectural model of the future. 
 

Name: Brian Patrick Gutierrez

Age: 50 

Occupation: Self-employed businessman

Education: 1990 graduate, Santa Fe High School, some college

Family: Married, father of four school-age children 

Government/Political Experience: Member Charter Review Commission; Member and Chairman, Planning Commission.

Community Service Activities: Member, Santa Fe Soccer Academy; Parishioner, St. Anne Parish Santa Fe 

1. Why are you running, and what skills do you hope to bring, or continue to bring, to the City Council?

Answer: The City Different is fast becoming the city indifferent. There are many reasons I decided to run for a seat on the City Council. Santa Fe needs strong, decisive leadership; an asset I will bring to City Council. As prescribed by the charter, the charge of the council is to “serve as the principal policy maker.” The City Council must also approve the annual budget. I will keep the duties mentioned above in the front of my mind while sitting on the council. Being the father of four school-age children also helped in making the choice to run for council easier. Decisions made today have a ripple effect that last into the future. These decisions will someday affect my children. Santa Fe must take a hard look at the way it is growing.

Growth can be a double edge sword. While a city that is not growing is dying, irresponsible growth can also have detrimental effects. Our natural resources, mainly water, public safety and traffic, are items that must be kept in mind while talking growth.

2. What do you consider the biggest issue facing Santa Fe, and how do you intend to address it?

Santa Fe is facing many, many issues. To pick just one is not an easy task. Unfortunate as it may be, and as I am speaking to the citizens of our city, our biggest issue is a city divided. Not only a cultural but also a financial division. Living here since birth, I have been blessed with not only living among but also the ability to get along with all cultures. I will keep the conversation going on the healing Santa Fe.

3. What is the biggest issue facing your district?

District 1 within itself is a tale of two cities. Hearing from the citizens of Santa Fe while I am out canvassing, the biggest issue facing the district is the attention to the city providing basic services. A very nice lady who lived off West Alameda went out of her way to show me how pedestrians must walk on the street as opposed to the sidewalk. The sidewalk was overgrown with trees from the arroyo that prevented walking on the sidewalk. Paseo de Peralta is not a pedestrian-friendly street, and this woman should not have to walk on the street due to lack of attention to detail from the city. Coming in a close second is Bicentennial Pool.

4. In 50 words or fewer, what is your opinion of (a) Alan Webber’s term as mayor and (b) the current City Council.

lack·lus·ter; adjective

1. lacking in vitality, force, or conviction; uninspired or uninspiring. 

5. How should the city of Santa Fe approach development of the Midtown Campus? What are your ideas for the site?

The city needs to do the following: demolition and remediation of structures in need, upgrade infrastructure for future development, get property zoned for future development, ingress and egress of the property for future development.

My idea for the College of Santa Fe campus is as follows: Start by putting all city of Santa Fe offices together on the campus. Move employees out of City Hall, water company, Siler Road and Market Station. Make a one-stop shop for the citizens of Santa Fe. This will reduce greenhouse gases from automobile travel, from both citizens and employees of the city. Vehicle idle time while trying to find a parking space downtown is a problem within itself. Once all city services are in a central part of town with adequate parking, then start leasing out other parcels of the campus for development. I would like to see and educational aspect retained. The campus will develop organically and rapidly if city services are located on the campus. Remember that the campus is 64 acres, and the city only needs a small portion of that. At this point there is a building on the campus that is in good shape and may be used for city offices. Also keep in mind that the city has property and offices on Siringo Road.

One last point, this move will also help change the landscape to the Midtown LINC.

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