Hyattsville is a vibrant, diverse, walkable, arts-oriented city, with an old-fashioned sense of community. This is a dynamic, up-and-coming area, close to the nation’s capital, with tree-lined streets, large backyards, and beautiful historic homes. We have some of the last affordable neighborhoods in the region. We're about 10 years into a baby boom, with no end in sight. We have an enviable location, with impressive proximity to major roads, public transit, and trails, enabling residents to travel easily throughout the DC Metro area. Our residents have a strong commitment to social justice and we're working hard to strengthen the civic ties which bind us all together. Hyattsville is an artsy, funky, scrappy, and welcoming community, and most people here are committed to keeping it that way. Hyattsville is a special place. It's also home.

     I was raised to believe strongly in the principles of citizenship and public service. I've always felt a responsibility that if something is broken, it's up to me to fix it. I ran for office in 2011 because I was discouraged by the factionalism and dysfunction I encountered on the Hyattsville City Council when I tried to bring a community garden to Hyattsville. I thought I could do something to help change that dynamic and I believe I have.

     When I first ran, I stressed that I was smart, tough, and hard-working. Those are the qualities that I rely on in my professional life and which I thought would
have the most practical application to this new endeavor. Over the course of my first term, I realized that I rely more heavily on other qualities as a Council member. Being tenacious is important, but being compassionate is essential. Being able to see the humor in absurd situations has also been a critical skill. Serving on Council is far from a solo effort. The work we do is as part of a team. The day-to-day work involves listening, learning, evaluating, and collaborating. I strive to share information widely and to understand other viewpoints. I've come to learn that my signature strengths as a politician are that I'm thoughtful, imaginative, and kind. I'm as discouraged as anyone by the corrosiveness of the national political culture, but my work on the local level is a concerted and idealistic effort to change our political culture from the bottom up. Our local political culture has improved dramatically over the past four years, with a new level of cooperation and respect characterizing the interactions among our elected officials and staff. We have also started to more effectively leverage the talents and energy of our residents and to find ways to put our residents' skills to work for Hyattsville. I am very optimistic about the four years ahead of us.

     Our community is both a work in progress and it's an area which is coming into its own. I have had the great privilege of being part of the collective efforts to transform this community into the wonderful place to live and work it is today. I've served the past four years representing Ward 2 on the Hyattsville City Council and I ask for your vote to allow me to continue the work we've started.

Shani N. Warner