What do you want Milpitians to know?
Timothy Alcorn: A lot. I’ll do my best to summarize. I could talk for hours about this. I want them to know that I feel their struggle. I’m right there with them. I commute to work just like everyone else. I am right at the heart of Milpitas and have been for over 20 years. And I’ve seen Milpitas change and grow; and sometimes when it changes, it’s not always for the best. And I’m right there with them. And no matter what, elected or not, I’m going to put my neck out, and I’m going to fight very hard for these issues. For personal reasons and for the residents; personal being this affects me too. The traffic affects me; it affects people I care about. My sister is a teacher, and I have a firsthand insight of how overcrowded the school system is. And I know the School Board is working hard, but they need our support. They need city council’s support to be able to fix a lot of these issues. I’m right there with them. And if I get elected I’m gonna work as hard as I possibly can to fix these big issues that hurt Milpitas on a daily basis. And I’m motivated because I don’t see that motivation in City Council right now. Our mayor is doing a fantastic job, but he’s one person. I want to go up there and fight for what’s right and fight to hand Milpitas back to the Milpitas residents. We need to start thinking of the people who live here, and the people who work here and the people who commute from here. We need to start thinking about them, and put them first.
Garry Barbadillo: Whether I’m on the Council or not, I will do the same. So what I want other Milpitians to know is vote for somebody, a candidate that they believe will empower them, a candidate that echoes what they want, whether it’s me or somebody else. That’s what I want Milpitians to know. And if Milpitians gives me another term, I want Milpitians to know the programs and the policies I’ve started will continue. I will be very active on their concerns. I will be very mindful of the developments; and whatever there is that needs to be decided on, I will make a stand, and that stand is purely grassroots based.
Karina Dominguez: I want Milpitans to know that I am a person of integrity. I am hardworking. I love the city for what it has given me as a single parent. It’s been very difficult. I’ve had a lot of challenges in my life. From completing college to providing the best education to my daughter to making sure that my household is taken care of, my parents, and working full time. I’ve had a lot of challenges as many times being the only woman of color around the decision table, and looking very young; that is something that sometimes a lot of people are concerned about. But I want people to know that my skillset, my work, and my actions speak louder than anything else. And I believe that the city of Milpitas is ready to have a leader that is different, to have a leader with the experience that doesn’t just say these are our issues, but this is how we’re going to fix our issues. And these are our solutions to get there. We can’t do this work by ourselves. We need the help of our community.
Marsha Grilli: I would like Milpitians to know that I am an honest person that leads with integrity. That I’m not going to make misleading statements; and if I say that I’m going to do something, I will do it. And when I make a decision or a vote, I will be able to explain it and back it up with facts and data.
Robert Marini: I want them to be more involved in our government. I want them to understand the issues more. They should reach out to me and the other council members, for sure; to tell them what they want for the city, so that’s what I want them to tell me…what are their most important issues? I think I got a handle on it with these issues that I’m talking about, but I don’t know for sure. I want them to reach out to me and go to the city council meetings, like I have, and complain about these things to the city. When they want a new ballpark field, or they want a new soccer field, or skateboard park, there is a lot of turnout. But on the other issues, there is less of a turnout. So hopefully they come out and talk to me, and tell me what they want so I can support them.
Carmen Montano: I want Milpitans to know that I’m there to serve them. I have an open door policy. I have strong roots here, and I’m always looking out for the families to make sure that their needs are met. I want to make this city a great city to raise a family and to provide a good quality of life for them.
Van Lan Truong: I will serve with honesty, transparency, integrity, and fairness. It really is about the way I learned from my parents. My parents were great people. For our culture, my parents were very ahead of their time. When we were young, when the war became worse and worse in Vietnam, when we saw the American soldier set foot in our lands, we became more exposed to other cultures; especially the American, along with other allies that fought for freedom in South Vietnam. My parents have more international friends than most Vietnamese families. We learned about cultures, we learned about the wonderful music that came from different cultures all around the world…we have friends from different parts of the world. I want to have that vision for our community. That, we are the world, and the world is us. Can we appreciate and respect each other’s cultures and differences and come together as one American, and work for the American values that we talk a lot about? That is democracy, freedom, equal rights for everyone. Can we do all of that? Really practice it, and not just talk about it. I always remember as a refugee when I came to this country how alone and how lost I was. My friend in a half joking way said, “Hey, kid, you have come a long way.” And I want everybody to come a long way together.
Note: Some of the candidates’ responses have been lightly edited for clarity.