For Somerville Patch's 2013 election guide, we asked all candidates running for office in Somerville the same three questions, and we posted their answers without editing them. Here are the responses from Suzanne Bremer:
Question: What are the two most important issues facing Somerville right now, and what would you do on the Board of Aldermen to address those issues?
The two most important issues facing Somerville, development and quality of life, are actually linked. For Somerville to be an even better place to live while keeping Somerville the place we love, we need a strong, independent voice at City Hall. I want that voice to be our voice. I want our voice to determine the changes that are coming to Somerville. I’m a librarian, and as Ward 3 Alderman, I’ll do what librarians always do – listen to peoples questions, understand the concerns behind these questions, gather information and present it in a way that we can all make sense of it and, together, work towards thoughtful, workable solutions. I will provide frequent communications, hold regular office hours, and create open forums so we can all participate in building a better Somerville.
Question: Tell us about your background.
My wife Jane and I have lived in Somerville for more than 20 years and are proud to be raising our two children here. I’m a graduate of Boston University and Simmons College and began my career working Price Waterhouse, a large accounting firm, before starting my own information technology company. I then worked as the webmaster for Newton, Massachusetts, and at the Global Development and Environment Institute at Tufts University. I’ve been active in our community. In 2007, concerned by the lack of a comprehensive, citywide plan, I ran for Mayor. I finished second in that race, and within 18 months of the election, the city began SomerVision, which resulted in the long-range plan that will guide the city’s development over the next twenty years. More recently, as president of the board, I successfully lead the Community Action Agency of Somerville, which runs Head Start in Somerville and Cambridge, through a major crisis and got it back on track to better serve the most vulnerable members of our community.
Question: Why should Somerville residents vote for you?
As Ward Alderman, I will continue act on my commitment to the people of Somerville. Focusing both on the important details of constituent services and on larger scale issues around development, I will bring to the office my talent for bringing people together, experience in business, academia and our community, and dedication to the democratic ideal that put the common good before private gain.