On November 7,
it's time for a change.
Vote for Mark Perkins
Fresh ideas & experience that fits.
In 2021 Mark was previously elected and served a 9-month term in office, finishing the term of another councilmember who resigned. While he was unable to run for re-election due to a family medical crisis, he used his time to advocate for our community, personally handing out fliers to under-engaged members of our city and raising awareness about issues facing our business owners and opportunities for public input. During his final council meeting other members noted that he had accomplished more in 9 months than some accomplish in 9 years.
As a former leader in the non-profit world Mark has over 10 years experience working across multi-cultural, interdisciplinary teams. He understands the importance of community-led approaches and the opportunities provided by non-profit partnerships. He knows first-hand the amazing things we can accomplish when we work together for the good of the community, having served on the Clarkston COVID-19 Community Task Force that distributed masks and education material throughout the community and building a multi-organization coalition that helped launch a collaborative community resource website.
Mark spent his childhood in countries in South America and Southeast Asia, and knows the challenges of learning and mastering new cultures and languages. He understands from experience the value of listening and leadership that creates a welcoming and accessible environment for all.
Five years ago Mark founded his own company and is familiar with the complexities of starting, growing, and running a business in today's complex and rapidly changing marketplace. With experience in organizational leadership he is committed to using his role and experience to support our local business community.
Like 13% of Clarkston residents, Mark became a homeowner over 5 years ago and understands the extreme challenge of buying on a budget in a hot housing market.
Like 87% of Clarkston's current residents, his family spent their first 4 years in the area as apartment tenants. As a former tenant, he understands the importance of having affordable rent and a clean, well-maintained space to live. During the first years of the pandemic he used his experience as an apartment manager to advocate for tenants, urging Clarkston to set up a rent assistance fund, and collaborated with others to raise close to $300,000 in funding through grants and private donors.
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Our community is rich in culture, talent, and potential. If we want to reach that potential, our community needs to be safe and recent events have put that safety in jeopardy. I believe that the path to a safe community means providing competitive pay to recruit talented, well-trained police officers and mental health professionals. It means an approach that also involves building partnerships with community-based organizations that help address the underlying issues affecting criminal activity. Beyond policing, our parks and infrastructure are in need of some upgrades so people of all ages have safe, well-lit places to walk and play. We need to hold landlords accountable who are not providing good places for our community to live.
Transparency is critical to trust and good leadership. Think of it this way: it’s not just whether you can look in a window to see how your bread is made, it’s whether you can even find the window in the first place. We must be proactive in how we approach transparency, focusing on clear communication, easily accessible information, and encouraging our community to stay informed & get involved. I believe in promoting the kind of healthy discussion and collaborative problem solving that benefits us all.
As a consultant with over a decade of experience, I have worked with leaders and organizations to help them use technology to make information more accessible to their employees and clients. During my time on council I worked hard to make sure that our public input was reflective of the whole community by raising awareness in underrepresented areas for our zoning rewrite.
In order for our community to flourish we need smart development that aims for improvement, not displacement. While not exhaustive, I believe this will take creative thinking and encouraging the kind of healthy discussions that produce innovative solutions. We need more spaces to gather, more spaces to eat, more spaces that provide jobs & generate revenue, yet that are affordable and environmentally conscious.
Our community is struggling with significant increases to property taxes, utilities, and rent, along with the rising cost of...everything. It’s going to take a balance of caring for our immediate needs, while looking to the future needs of the generations that will come after us. We're not going to get there without working together to find areas for compromise that both preserve neighborhood character and allow for more housing options and additional income through business.
One of the pillars of thriving communities is a healthy economy. I believe that strong, resilient businesses are critical to our development and success. I am committed to making Clarkston a great place to live, work, and play. Our city should be a place where it’s easy for people to invest economically in ways that both benefit our people and draw others to spend their money here.
As the owner of my own consulting business I understand the challenges of starting and growing a client base on a limited budget. I want to see Clarkston become one of the best places in the state for business owners who want to invest in the community and make a profit.
An important aspect of leadership in a city of our size is building bridges while leveraging our knowledge and resources for the good of the community. Partnerships that activate the talent, resources & insight of local organizations, businesses, and community-members are critical to our success as a community.
During my time in the non-profit world, I learned the value of collaboration across organizations and within the community. During the pandemic I advocated for the city council to allocate money toward eviction relief and partnered with others to raise an additional $300,000 in rent and utility assistance through public and private funding. In response to growing needs I built a team of volunteers from multiple organizations that created a collaborative online resource database that continues to serve the community.
I am only as good as we, and I believe my best work has been accomplished in collaboration with others. Whether working to build a collaborative resource management system for the community, serving on our technical advisory committee to update our zoning code, or helping organizations create culture and systems to better accomplish their mission, that statement always holds true.
I spent my childhood in multiple countries and have served on and led multiple cross-cultural teams both within the United States and internationally. My experience both as an independent consultant and as a non-profit leader covers over a decade of advocacy and community-based approaches that focus on strengthening local leadership and collaboration.
We need leadership that brings multiple voices to the table, establishes a culture of service & collaboration, and helps us move Clarkston forward. I won’t always get it right, but this is the kind of leadership I respect and I am committed to working toward, will you join me?