Thanks to Beth Roalstad for being this week’s Fresh Perspective Profile! We love our community leaders!#GetFreshCOS
1. Tell us about yourself!
I moved to Colorado Springs in 2006 with my family from the Denver metro area. I have two wonderful daughters and an awesome dog. I am a social worker, community connector, mom and all around active person. I love our trails for hiking, running, biking and scenery gaping! Building a circle of friends who feel committed to improving the quality office in our community for now and future generations has been one of my main motivations. I am a non-profit professional and just joined the leadership team at Pikes Peak United Way.
2. What are the top three issues you see facing Colorado Springs?
The top three issues I see facing Colorado Springs relate to civics. I am very concerned about a pervading public sentiment that does not adequately fund local government by rejecting all revenue generating taxes, fees or enterprises The notion that local government must continually squeeze resources from a lean budget due to TABOR to pay for basic services is hampering our city’s ability to attract new business and talent. Secondly, I am frustrated by low voter turnout. This is a national issue not just a local one I have been an advocate for ” Get out the vote” activities for nearly 25 years. I am dumbfounded that Americans reject their basic duty to participate in our democracy by being an informed citizen and exercising their right to vote. Lastly, I am frustrated that our community still has a reputation issue. I travel quite a bit and unfortunately Colorado Springs still has a poor reputation compared to other cities along the Front Range.
3. What do you love about Colorado Springs?
I love that Colorado Springs has become a community that I have been able to adopt and has become my home for the long term (if only we had an ocean…) I have been very happy with the high quality education my daughters receive at the CM-12 schools and the plethora of activities they have enjoyed from dance, to swimming , and art — all from nonprofit organizations I might add! I also love our proximity to the amazing trails and mountains nearby. Finally, it has turned out that this is also a community that I have been able to contribute and grow professionally. I am supported by a vast network of friends and colleagues that I have made mostly through my work in the “for impact” sector.
4. What would you change about Colorado Springs?
If I could change a few things about Colorado Springs… Well, since I don’t have a time machine I will have to say that I wish I could influence future voters to eliminate TABOR and adopt a modest tax increase to invest in our infrastructure, storm water, parks, Human services and economic development opportunities.
5. Would you ever consider running for office?
Running for office has been a goal of mine since I was in junior high. I plan on running for office after my daughters make it through high school… So I have about 9 more years until my youngest hits that milestone. I have decided this because I feel the impact on them now would be too great. I look forward to being an active community member until then!