Upper Arlington City Council
Kathy Adams is a graduate of Upper Arlington High School who moved back to the city when it was time to raise her own children. As a single mom, she recognizes that rising housing costs create a barrier to making Upper Arlington accessible to all types of families. Kathy has worked in state government for more than a decade and she understands the role government plays in people’s daily lives. She wants to help Upper Arlington be prepared for the changing needs and preferences of her community over time and to give back to the community that has done so much for her. Kathy is a fierce advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion in her work as an attorney and within her community. If elected, Kathy says she’s “not afraid to stand up for what is right and fight for the changes needed to move Upper Arlington forward.”Support Katharine! Kathy Adams for UA
“I never thought about running for office until other strong women leaders encouraged me and gave me that vision for myself.”
Meet the Candidate
Can you tell our members a little bit about your journey to filing as a candidate?
I never thought about running for office until other strong women leaders encouraged me and gave me that vision for myself. I worked in a refugee office in college, and that is why I went to law school, to help others at a higher level. I have always been passionate about helping others and making a difference. But I have struggled with imposter syndrome as a lawyer, and I never would have seen myself as an elected official. Because of the support of other women, I have come so far that now I am mentoring a young female attorney, and I am working on helping her get over her imposter syndrome, and trying to get her to see an ambitious future for herself.
Tip O’Neill famously said that “all politics is local.” What are the top two issues your community faces today and how do you plan to address them?
I want to work on economic development and hiring and purchasing policies to be inclusive of women and women owned businesses, as well as minority owned businesses, veteran and lgbtq individuals and businesses, etc. We have a lot of development going on right now, and very little commercial property, so this is a very timely issue.
Accessible housing is another major issue that impacts everyone in my community. Housing in Upper Arlington is extremely expensive, and single moms like me can no longer afford to live here. I have been working on accessible housing as part of a grassroots group here, and we have developed a strategy with five pillars to tackle the housing issue from different angles. I also want to advocate for seniors, like my parents, so they can age in place and stay in the community with their families. We need accessible housing for our seniors.
What stands out in our values as most important to you and your experience (or expected experience) in public office? Our values are:
∙ Economic empowerment
∙ Equity and independence
∙ Dominion over our bodies
∙ Access to education
∙ Safe communities in which to live and raise our families
As I mentioned in the last question, inclusive economic development is part of my platform. I have met so many women business owners, and I would love to represent them on council and support them with policy. I would come to city council with the lens of a single working mom, with an eye towards equity and independence for women. My mom is an active donor to Planned Parenthood, and those values are important to me. I think everyone, especially single moms like me, deserves the excellent education that my community provides, and I want to work to make my community more accessible for different types of families. My suburb is also very safe and has lots of park space, and I think different types of families should be able to move here.
What does a Matriots PAC endorsement mean to you and your campaign?
I come from a long line of strong women. My grandmother was an orphan refugee who worked and raised my mother to be strong and independent. My mother worked as a biochemist, despite being pressured to not pursue a career. This endorsement is very meaningful to me, and it feels like the continuation of a tradition of women supporting women and teaching their daughters to be strong and move up even more with each future generation. This endorsement reminds me of why I am running, that I am not an imposter, that I have the support of other women and men, that I don’t even know, and that I can support other women, and put myself out there to continue the work of trying to level the playing field.