Kari Birdseye for Benicia City Council
Leadership, Listening, Balance and Commitment
By Vicki Byrum Dennis, July 29, 2022
I support Kari Birdseye for Benicia City Council. She will be an excellent member of our city’s leadership team. She will bring a vision for Benicia that balances economic growth and the health and safety of our citizens, with a commitment to preserve Benicia’s small-town appeal, our unique place in California’s history, and our reputation as an arts destination.
I know Kari as a highly professional woman of principle, a believer in Benicia, and as someone who has stepped up again and again to help our community reach its full potential.
I’ve seen this soft-spoken woman in action and recognize that beneath her calm words and quiet demeanor lies a core of strength and commitment, a passionate determination to make life better for everyone in Benicia.
I have found her to be truly unique. She actually listens to what you say. She looks you in the eye as you speak. She listens and she connects with what you are saying. No interruptions, no side glances. She is with you in that moment.
And she doesn’t forget what you have said. Because she is also a woman of action. She has served for more than 10 years on the Benicia Planning Commission which has given her the ability to see and act on the critical issues facing our city. She withstood the attacks by various PACs in the previous election. A strong woman indeed.
As a former communications professional myself, I appreciate Kari’s skill as a seasoned communicator, especially on environmental issues. After an 11-year career with CNN as Executive News Producer (and winning an Emmy as part of the frontline production team for the coverage of the Olympic Park bombing), Kari turned her skills to helping non-profit groups including her work with Earthjustice’s inaugural Healthy Communities campaign goals of lessening harmful pesticide impacts on farmworkers. She currently is Senior Strategic Communications Director of the Natural Defense Resources Council whose work on environmental issues has made it a critical resource for all who work to preserve our earth.
But today I am a one of Benicia’s many working artists. And I also know Kari as a lover of the arts, a collector of local art and a supporter and promoter of our strong arts community. Kari understands the economic impact the arts and the artists have on Benicia and is committed to supporting and expanding the arts community.
Kari will bring all her professional experience, volunteer efforts, her commitment to Benicia, and her unique manner of listening to the critical job of Benicia City Council member. And she will be terrific. I am proud to vote for Kari Birdseye, and I hope you will join with me in supporting and voting for her.
Vicki Byrum Dennis