Reynoldsburg City Council, Ward 1
If elected Shanette will be the first African American woman elected in Reynoldsburg. Shanette plans to bring a different perspective to the council when addressing safety; by building a relationship with our law enforcement, economic development; re-purposing existing commercial space and infrastructure; focusing on parks, roads, and sidewalks.
Running for office for the first time, her experiences within her community provides her with a better understanding of the needs of Reynoldsburg. Shanette serves as treasurer of the Reynoldsburg Football Parent Association, volunteer for the annual Taste of Reynoldsburg, and on the planning committee of the Tomato Festival. As an IT Project Manager I’ve learned to collaborate, lead and get results that will serve her community well once elected.
In 2020 Shanette will begin her work as a Reynoldsburg City Council Member, Ward 1.
The responsibilities of city council include:
- Council is the legislative body, comprised of three At-Large members (representing the entire city), four Ward members (representing a respective ward), and a Council President, who is elected from the city at-large.
- Council is responsible for finance, service, safety, and community development topics.
Meet the Candidate
Can you tell our members a little bit about your journey to filing as a candidate?
The presidential election in November 2016 forever impacted my life. I knew, I had to do something, and I could no longer sit back and talk about the change I wanted to see, but BE the Change. In 2017, I became involved with my local political club to assist electing women at a local level. Never in a million years did I think about being involved in “politics.” I took the leap of faith and decided to step up and step out and run for Reynoldsburg City Council Ward 1. There were many discussions with family and friends, and I received their encouragement and support. Most recently, with the unexpected death of my sister in 2018 due to insufficient health care, I knew in that moment I must continue to fight, and fight for all women and women of color for change.
Tell our members about a friend or family member who inspired you to become a leader.
My entire family has been an incredible influence on my life and my decision to run for office. It was them, that reminded me that I am an inspirational leader for our family and my community. As a young girl, my mother and aunts would remind me, tell me I am destined for great things! They instilled in me that everyone has a purpose on this earth and I need to find mine. I understand that life I live is not about me but those I can help along the way, to me that’s what being a leader means. Inspiring others without you even knowing.
Some of you are military veterans, some small business owners, some professionals, some mothers and grandmothers, some homemakers. How did one of these experiences shape who you are as a person and leader?
I am a first-generation college graduate and my mother would often tell me ‘they cannot take your education away,’ and I have always held onto those words. I knew early on it was not about how intelligent a child was, but more about work ethic, determination, and the willingness to accent that anything is possible. As a lifelong Democrat, my experiences as an African American female in Information Technology (IT) have been very difficult. My knowledge and intelligence is consistently questioned. I hear the whispers, “Is she smart enough? Will she fit in? Can she do the job? My professional and life experiences have taught me to be a leader, be decisive, to listen, to think outside of the box and to create win-win situations. Lastly, I remind myself often, “Don’t be afraid to fail!”
The Matriots PAC has a goal to see 50% of all elected offices in Ohio held by women by 2028. What is your vision for Ohio in 2028?
I would encourage more women to lean-in to make their mark in our community. I envision women in Reynoldsburg to be influential, to be leaders, to recognize the power we have as women to make decisions and to demand a seat at the table. Don’t wait to be invited to the table. By 2028, my vision is we won the fight against equal pay; we won the war against healthcare; educational funding for all families no matter your zip code is successful and we have laws to protect our most vulnerable loved ones.
Tip O’Neill famously said that “all politics is local.” What are the top-two issues your community or our state face today?
All politics are truly local. The more our neighbors understand the power in their vote on local issues the better our communities will be. Local elections impact decisions ranging from sidewalks, roads, garbage, snow removal, and relationships with your local police officers. Once elected, I will bring a different perspective to City Council when addressing safety; by building relationship with our law enforcement, economic development; repurposing existing commercial space and infrastructure; focusing on parks, roads and sidewalks.
Tell us something personal about yourself.
I consider myself a sideline coach mom. Both of our boys have played football since the age of five. I have studied the game for 15 years, and I have a pretty good eye for defensive and offensive plays. As a board member for our local high school football team, I’m around the coaches and the players a lot and I provide advice on plays before the game. I study the film on Saturday morning for improvement and communicate that back to the coaches and players. My friends call me Coach Mom with a smile.