Karen for City Council

Safety, Vision, Environmentalism, Progress

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Just have to say how incredibly devastated we all are here in CA regarding our Catastrophic and most destructive fire situations.....Very hard to think what we can do to be effective...Sending much love and as much financial and physical support as we can muster. Please let me know if you have any great ideas
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Candidate Statement

Karen Cunningham

Small Business Owner



Safety, Vision, Environmentalism, Progress

I am running for Brisbane City Council as I want to further contribute to Brisbane in a more meaningful way. I feel truly privileged to have been able to serve my Community since moving here in 1994. I have worked in various capacities, from volunteering to serving as a Planning Commissioner from 2010- 2015 and again in 2017.

I am looking forward to initiating public improvements throughout Brisbane and would welcome becoming a part of the positive decision making process that serves our future generations. I would like to improve our financial, educational and recreational opportunities as well as see all changes in Brisbane decided by the residents of Brisbane only.

Affordable Housing. If elected, I would like to set up an “affordable housing working group” from within the community, to include Property Owners, Renters, Builders and City Government. We need to reframe our thoughts on how to create affordable housing.

Brisbane Baylands. If there were a vote today, I would vote no for housing; for one reason. I do not believe it is safe. My criteria for “safe” is “would I live there or allow my child to live there?” If elected I would push for the highest standard of remediation possible. People need to understand the dangers.

That being said, we are going to face some pretty tough and ugly choices regarding the Baylands. We now have enormous pressure from our state and local leaders to allow some housing on the Baylands. Can we clean it up to make that even a possibility?

Connecting Old Brisbane to the Ridge. I envision us connecting the Ridge and Old Town Brisbane. It is long overdue; we really need both parts of our City fully integrated.

The Arts. It is very important to expand our City’s support for the Arts by partnering with community artists and creating a strong Artistic Identity.

Environmentalism. As Brisbane prides itself in being ahead of the environmental curve, I would like to take us even further by introducing ideas and programs that are not only achievable in our building practices and protection of San Bruno Mountain, but to further educate us all on the benefits of cleaner energy, leveraging technology as it becomes available and lessening our pollution footprint in its’ entirety. This includes ideas like driverless electric multi person shuttles etc. which would serve our entire community.


Moved to Brisbane from San Francisco in 1994 and purchased my first home in 1995.


Congresswoman Jackie Speier (2006 - present)

Citizens group working with FAA and other groups to reduce noise in Brisbane (2006-present)

Citizens Committee for the Brisbane Swimming Pool (1998-1999)

Citizens Committee for the Brisbane Dog Park (2002-2004)

BBCAG ~ 2005 - 2007

CERT ~ 2004 - 2017 Current Chairperson

Brisbane Village Helping Hands Volunteer ~ 2013 - present

G3 Volunteer ~ 2017

BES and Lipman Donor/Volunteer since 2005. Science Fair and Career Days volunteer

Nine Lives Foundation ~ Feral Cat TSNR rescue 2010 - present


Shapes Health and Fitness Center in Sydney Australia ~ 1983 - 1988

Owner and Managing Director

A 50,000sq ft facility that incorporated :- Aerobic, stretch, circuit training, prenatal and yoga classes. A separate free weight training area, creche, health food bar, medical center, weight loss and fitness training as well as a full service European style beauty salon.

Paper Tiger Productions ~ 1994 - 2014

A Full Service Agency for Art Direction and Styling services

Partial Client List:-

PAMF, Stanford Hospital, Mills Peninsula Hospital, Sequoia Hospital, Microsoft, Delta Dental, UCSF, Kaiser Permanente.

Recent Movies

The Bridge so Far, “a suspense story” by David L. Brown ~ Art Director (2005).

Cowspiracy ~ financial contributor (2014).

What the Health ~ financial contributor (2017).

Arbonne Independent Consultant ~ 2006 - present

Specializing in the 30 Day Healthy Eating Program.

364 Days of Healthy Eating (because nobody is perfect)

A Healthy Eating Guide with over 365 Vegan and Gluten Free recipes

Why Brisbane?

What struck me the first time I came to Brisbane was the obvious natural beauty and that country town atmosphere. And San Bruno Mountain. That incredibly breathtaking beauty. A recurring dream that I had as a child was living in a Country town in the middle of a big City. And here it was. Another thing that struck me and has been part of the reason I love Brisbane so much was that it seemed that "everybody" lived here. There were large and small homes, which I found very appealing. Indeed after moving here with my young son, it became clear that this was indeed a diverse community of people from all walks of life. We were not "on the map" back then. Brisbane was still that little working class City built next to San Francisco's dump. Indeed that has changed and we face many challenges moving forward.

Other Items on my ToDo List

What do you want? ~ In Brisbane we have a few very vocal people who come to most meetings and voice their opinions. If elected, I want to hear all voices.

  • What do young families in Brisbane want ?
  • How can we help our seniors more ?
  • What is important to you ?
  • Our Citizenry is getting younger. Young people what do you want ?

In Brisbane we have so much to look forward to ~ If elected I would also really push for downtown beautification, more social activities that connect our Community; more music, art, social and civic opportunities. It is such a pleasure living in a City where we have so many positive people making huge efforts to make life better for us all. Let's work on that together and make life even better for everyone. Lets work together on our "can do" attitude.

School Children and others in need ~ It is a frightening travesty to me that even one person in our Community could even go unfed for one meal. I do not know how to fix that, but I would certainly like to add this to my to do list as I do not think it would be too hard to resolve.

Water Catchment ~ Each rainy season, I am more and more baffled as to why we have made no attempt to catch the millions of gallons of water that flow from San Bruno Mountain into our sewer system and ultimately out to the ocean. We pay for that and then we pay SF to bring us water. There must be a better way. I see that SF has actually installed a pilot project on Holloway to collect 1 million gallons of water each year.

Parking ~ YES, it is a local nightmare and yes I think it is about time to address it. I am in favor of parking permits.

Family Safety ~ As a long time member of the Brisbane CERT group (Community Emergency Response Team) I am painfully aware that our City of 4500 people could well be on our own in the event of a natural or other disaster. I have tried to push for more outreach and education of our Citizenry for years, but as there has been little interest from the Citizens, not much has happened. Every person we educate regarding how to respond after a disaster is one less person who will be requesting help. So, if elected I will have this on my short list of to do items as well.


Shipping Container Homes and Restaurants. I first saw these in Auckland New Zealand and fell in love with the concept. The restaurant is in Buenos Aires. Look how classy and fabulous it is. Some of the homes are also just amazing....Some of my vision for Brisbane. ? Out at the Marina? One of the reasons I love the idea is that they can be moved

Campaign Postcard

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Susan Bakalova

James Ball

Bistra Bejanski

Sharon L. Boggs

Bonnie Bologoff

Jodi-Lyn Borghesi

Leanne Borghesi

Luc Bouchard

Vito Bovo

Maya Brandon

Niahm Brosnan

Daniel Carter

Mark Cianci

Sue Cochran

Brittni Coleman

Ricky Coleman

Daniel Cunningham

Emmett Cunningham

Dawn David

Leslie Davis

Danette Davis

Ron Davis

Humberto DeAlba

Jeffrey DeAlba

William DeAlba

Lise Dumont

Peter R. Fishr

Sisto Flores

Kim Follien

Carol Forest

Pat Foulds

Darvy Franks

Kevin Fryer

Jen Garcia

Tim Garcia

Kathryn Anderson Gooding

Doug Gooding

Lynne Grant

Greg Harris

Ana Maria Hernandez

Carmel Kabash

Carrie Kabash

Carl Lan

Tom Laratil

Gerard Lee

Kelly Lyon-Carter

Shane Maddox

Paul Mangiamele

Phil Marks

Renee Marmion

Rafael Martinez

Roberto Mendez

Lynda Monteil

Meena Motwani

Colt Neustadt

Debbie Newman

Ronald Oremland

Jasama Patel

Mita Patel

Carlos Perez

Maria Perez

Miguel Perez

Dee Dee Porter

Tony Press


Lilli Rey

Dan Rickerd

Leticia Valera Rickerd

Mary Rogers

Randy Romreill

Michell Salamanca

Esther Diane Schreiber

Joe Schreiber

Tom Seawell

Linda Seekins

David Smugar

Jimi Sosa

Joyce Stern

Mary Stodder

Isidro Valverde

Linda Vega

Eve Vuillemainrey

Juanita Yee

Kathryn Yee

Norman Anderson

Thank You

A huge thanks to Kevin Fryer for allowing me to showcase our beautiful City with his photography