Dupont Circle residents, meet your newest ANC Commissioner.
Locals overwhelmingly voted in favor of candidate John Kupcinski during a special election at ANC 2B’s general meeting at the Brookings Institution (1775 Massachusetts Avenue NW) last night.
The meeting started with a ceremonial ballot box unveiling from Director of the Office of ANCs, Gottlieb Simon. The director, with help from Mike Silverstein, 2B-06, then sealed the box with tape and officially opened the voting period. Neighbors who live in the ANC’s 2B-07 single member district — including Greater Greater Washington’s David Alpert — filed in throughout the night to cast their votes.
In the end, Kupcinski won 31 votes. His opponent, Holly Biglow, received seven. In the hallway after the election, defeated candidate Biglow was all smiles.
“I’m really happy to have been apart of this process,” she said. “This is my very first time running for something. I was glad to be apart of it.”
Moving forward, Kupcinski said the St. Thomas Church renovation, traffic issues and local development will be at the top of his agenda after he’s sworn in.
“I would need to sit down with the other ANC commissioners first, but … the traffic situation at 18th and P [streets NW] is just horrendous,” he said. “There’s also a lot of development that’s going on, especially at the Patterson Mansion … and Dupont Underground is going to be more and more important as we move forward with that project.”
Some Dupont Circle residents will have the chance to elect a new ANC commissioner tonight.
ANC 2B will tally votes tonight during a special election for former commissioner Justine Underhill’s 2B-07 seat, which was vacated in August when Underhill moved to New York City. Voting takes place between 7:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. during tonight’s ANC 2B meeting at the Brookings Institution (1775 Massachusetts Avenue NW) near Dupont Circle.
Dupont residents Holly Biglow and John Kupcinski have entered into the race for the 2B-07 seat. In previous interviews with Borderstan, both candidates have said weighing in on the planned St. Thomas Church development is at the top of their agenda if elected.
“First and foremost, … I’d like to try to [figure out] how the construction is going to happen [at the St. Thomas’ Parish], how the operations will work, how the pre-construction, construction will work,” said Kupcinski. “Just make sure there aren’t any misunderstandings. It’s going to be one of the biggest developments happening in 2B-07.”
“I know the St. Thomas Church project is a very large project,” Biglow told us. “It’s very important to the community, so that will be the number one issue that will have to be addressed.”
According to ANC 2B chair Noah Smith, 2B-09, ballots will be available in the back of the ANC meeting room. D.C. Director of the Office of ANCs, Gottlieb Simon, will check in voters as they arrive. Locals do not need to stay for the entire meeting to cast a vote, added Smith.
Dupont Circle’s ANC 2B is getting ready for a special election.
Residents Holly Biglow and John Kupcinski have entered into a race for former commissioner Justine Underhill’s 2B-07 seat, which was vacated last month when Underhill moved to New York City. Now, here’s your chance to hear from one of them.
We spoke with Kupcinski about some of the local issues he feels strongly about:
Borderstan: Tell me a little bit about why you decided to run for the 2B-07 seat.
John Kupcinski: I’ve been involved in neighborhood politics, I purchased my property about a year and a half ago or so. I made a fairly big investment. It’s the biggest purchase I’ll probably ever make in my entire life So I wanted to make a big investment in the community as well. I got involved with Church Street Neighbors. Meeting the people who are my neighbors, I’m a proponent of trying to make things better. I felt like this is one of the ways I could contribute to the community.
If you are elected, what will be one of your first priorities?
First and foremost, … I’d like to try to [figure out] how the construction is going to happen [at the St. Thomas’ Parish], how the operations will work, how the pre-construction, construction will work. Just make sure there aren’t any misunderstandings. It’s going to be one of the biggest developments happening in 2B-07.
How do you plan to interact with other neighborhood associations, if elected?
It’s important to have people’s voices heard. One of the things we’re blessed with in 2B-07 is that we have a lot of very active and engaged community members who have decided to participate in the political process. So that, I think, is a fantastic benefit and also something that can help whoever the ANC commissioner is in October. I would see those organizations as a conduit for ideas and to help out with initiatives and to be able to provide communication back and forth between constituent groups within the neighborhood.
Is there anything you’d want to change in the way ANC 2B operates?
This is kind of a non-answer, but my perception has been on the other side of the microphone. So, I would need to get in and see the workings of how things are happening. I don’t know yet. But I am looking forward to working with everybody. I think that everybody in the ANC has a significant amount to give and contribute. They’ve made the neighborhood a better place to live in. I’m excited about working with everybody.
You said previously that, even if you don’t win the election, you’ll still be involved in the community. Are there specific things you’d undertake?
I’ve been very fortunate to, through this process, to meet a number of the different neighbors and develop a lot of close friendships. I would get involved in [Dupont Circle Citizens Association] or Church Street Neighbors or even work with a message board that people are active on within the community.
How will you use social media to engage with your potential future constituents?
My Twitter is very professional. Mostly articles that I think are interesting with respect to information security. One of the things that I would like to do is find a way to engage people on social media, whether that be on Twitter, create a 2B-07 media account. Using other blogs. I know the ANC has a blog. But I’d try to find as many ways to reach out to people.
Residents of the 2B-07 single member district can cast their ballots next month at the Brookings Institution on Oct. 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Click here for more information regarding voter eligibility and the voting process.