David Golobay faces election opponent in Happy Valley
David Golobay, a member of the Happy Valley City Council since 2017, will face Jennifer Brownlee in his reelection bid.
Brownlee made it to the final six out of 14 applicants for the city's vacant council spot in 2019 and was disappointed to see that the all-male City Council eventually chose another man over Ana Sarish, who had initially received two votes for the appointment.
Golobay said that increasing the diversity of the City Council was a factor in his decision, as well as appointee David Emami's deep knowledge of land-use practices as they relate to cities.
Happy Valley councilors appointed Emami to become the first Iranian-American member of a city council in Oregon's history with a 3-1 vote in March 2019. Mayor Tom Ellis was the tie-breaking vote after the council voted 2-2 five times in failed attempts to make a decision during this meeting.
Brownlee said she is hoping to unseat Golobay, not to settle the score, but rather because she loves living in Happy Valley and would like to help make it an even better place to live, work and play.
"As a small business owner, I want to see more small business growth — businesses that are unique, diverse and locally owned," Brownlee said.
Golobay also is a local business owner who is emphasizing the positive in his campaign.
"I love my community, and I am someone who has devoted most of my adult life to giving back to my community, whether it was coaching local youth sports or volunteering on the PTO," Golobay said.
Brownlee is a registered Democrat and Golobay is a registered Republican, but both candidates are being measured in their public statements as they run for the nonpartisan city office. What follows is a short bio of each candidate in alphabetical order, with an approximately equal number of words devoted to each.
Brownlee participated in last year's Emerge Oregon program that trains Democratic women in how to win public office. She said she has always had a strong need to serve her community through volunteering.
"I have spent the majority of my adulthood volunteering for causes that I believe in," she said. "And right now, my cause is Happy Valley."
Brownlee has volunteered for Clackamas Bookshelf, served on Happy Valley's Traffic & Public Safety Committee, hosted National Night Out block parties and organized several voter registration drives at local high schools. She was inspired to enter politics by her mother, Sarah (Dunn) Bushore, who was on the Beaverton City Council as she was growing up.
"I would like parks and green spaces that are accessible to all residents and available in all neighborhoods," Brownlee said. "I want to see a community center where seniors, teens, kids and their parents all come together for exercise and enrichment classes. These are the conversations I want to have as your city councilor."
Brownlee and her husband received a major wakeup call from the 2008 housing crisis, which she says hit her family especially hard.
"I want Happy Valley to be a place where small businesses thrive, where senior citizens can age in place, and where young families have affordable, available child care options," she said.
Golobay said he's proud of the City Council's accomplishments over the past four years but says his work as a city councilor is not yet complete. While he has been on the council, the city has taken over parks and recreation services from the county, completed sidewalks in the "Super Block" that elected officials saw as critical around Happy Valley elementary/middle schools, passed the police levy for which he was the chair of the campaign committee, created a downtown urban-renewal district, and promoted the Happy Valley Youth Council program.
Golobay said the city still has to face an unprecedented health crisis and economic recession.
"As someone who faced financial struggle during the 2008 Great Recession, I know firsthand what many Happy Valley residents are experiencing right now during these tough times," he said.
Golobay pledges to be the "strong and compassionate leader" necessary to advocate for relief for the thousands of working families in Happy Valley.
"As we head into the next phase of this pandemic, I am ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work," he said. "I am committed to ensuring that Happy Valley remains a great place to live and work."
Golobay is the past president of the Happy Valley Business Alliance, past chair of the North Clackamas County Chamber of Commerce, and past vice-chair of the Happy Valley Traffic & Public Safety Committee.
Filing for office?
The seats currently held by Emami and Golobay are up for election this year, and Emami is currently the only candidate for his seat. Candidates for elections in Happy Valley must file by Aug. 25. More information about filing can be found at happyvalleyor.gov.
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