On Friday, June 1, Jack Jacobson, candidate for the Ward 2 State Board of Education seat, will host a Kiddy Happy Hour to discuss concerns and share ideas on how to improve schools in Ward 2 and across the city.
This event – which will take place at Century 21 Redwood Realty (1701 Q Street NW) from 5 to 8 pm – is open to all parents and community members involved, and invested, in the neighborhood school system. Free childcare will be provided so that attendees can participate as much as possible!
Jacobson announced his candidacy against incumbent Mary Lord in March. He is a member of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B/Dupont, representing District 4. The school board elections are non-partisan; election day is November 6.
Editor’s note: The following interview with Patrick Mara has been in the works since he won the Ward 1 seat on the DC State Board of Education last November 2. We were interested in learning more about the first Republican elected to a major office in D.C. since Carol Schwartz served on the City Council and current Councilmember David Catania switched his party affiliation to Independent.
Mara is now running for an At-Large Council seat in the April 26 special election. The seat opened up when Kwame Brown was elected Council Chairman; Sekou Biddle was temporarily appointed to the seat and is running for a full term. Since a number of Borderstan readers reside in Ward 1, we also have an interview with Bryan Weaver scheduled; Mara and Weaver are the only two candidates in the race who live in Ward 1.
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Borderstan: When and why did you first move to D.C.? Where did you live before moving into the Borderstan area — what brought you to the hood?
Mara: I permanently moved to D.C. in the spring of 1997 to work for the late Senator John Chafee of Rhode Island, on the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. I previously lived in Foggy Bottom and Capitol Hill. I bought in Columbia Heights in the spring of 2004 on 11th Street between Kenyon and Lamont. This was following the closure of Knob Hill and just prior to the opening of Wonderland — a weekday neighborhood favorite.
I love Columbia Heights because of the rich diversity of the neighborhood as well as the convenient placement of metro and bus. Although there was a much smaller Giant at the time, there was a new supermarket coming in (“New Giant”). I continue to not own a car, so public transportation and supermarket options are very important to me.
Borderstan: Favorite thing about living in the neighborhood? Least favorite?
Mara: You could pretty much spend your entire life within a five block radius of Columbia Heights without ever having to leave. There are restaurants, the historic Gala Theatre, a big supermarket, schools and retail. It’s a livable, walkable community. What I’m most concerned with is that D.C. strongly discourages small business development in the city. We definitely need to do a better job of incentivizing small independent businesses.