8th District City Council: Craig Sutherland
Address: 2716 N. 22nd St.
Family: Single father; one daughter
Employment: Owns Great Lakes Bounce Houses; works with Laborers Local 1091
Education: Superior High School graduate; training through Laborers Local 1091
Government and civic experience and organizations: President of the Billings Park Business Association, cofounder and co-chairperson for Team Carr; cofounder of Night of Blue; cofounder of #wearesuperior; involved in bringing back Billings Park Days.
What assets do you have that will help you represent the people of your district?
I'm vocal. I will say what I think is absolutely right, and what needs to be done. And I will reach out to my district to find out what they want. It's not just my personal opinion; it's my district's opinion. I don't think we see that in city politics much. I'm always out there in my district as it is, helping out with events and stuff. I'm all about action, not words. He said actions speak louder than words. One of the things I would like to do is hold town hall meetings once or twice a year ... for residents of my district to hear their concerns. He said while the Billings Park Civic Center is in Councilor Keith Kern's district, it would provide a good location to hold town hall meetings.
Why are you running for City Council and what do you hope to accomplish?
The reason I'm running is we're a city in transition. I think we need a fresh perspective. I love this city; I am proud of it. Sutherland said he grew up in Superior, then left for seven years, but he was drawn right back to Superior. I want to try to make it better for my daughter, our next generation, our future. I don't want to leave them with some big problems. We've got to start fixing some things now. And in recent elections, our city has proven they want something different.
What do you believe the city's top three priorities should be, and what will you do to help the city achieve those goals?
Responsible spending and a more transparent spending plan so people know where the money is going. I've seen other cities that have a checkbook online. I know they can do it right now, but it's really hard to find out. So I think transparency in spending is one of the biggest things.
He also wants to promote tourism. I hate to say it but when you look across the bridge to Duluth, and I hate saying it, every year they release a statement that millions of people came and did that. What can we do here to bring tourism here.
I am a small business owner with Great Lakes Bounce Houses. I think that if we can somehow promote our small businesses and attract small businesses to our downtown, that's what we need to do. He said that will help attract tourism, and that's part of what #wearesuperior does. We like to attract small business and promote that. We do have a lot of small business in our community, especially in this area (downtown). If we can promote that, then that's what we have to do to attract tourism and help small business.
Win or lose, I will never give up my passion for the city.
Sutherland said if anyone has any questions for him, he can be found on Facebook at Craig Sutherland for 8th District City Council, www.facebook.com/Craigfor8th.