With diverse training and experience in business, government contracting, retail and customer management, I bring a unique blend of analytical, collaborative and communication skills to offer as an Edmonds’ councilmember.
United States Air Force Academy, BS in Management, 1989
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, MS in Aeronautical Science, 1993
Contracting Officer, United States Air Force, 1989-1994
Independent Contractor, Mary Kay Cosmetics, 1990-present
Swimming Teacher and Coach, Harbor Square Athletic Club, 2008-present
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Government contracting officers, those authorized to sign contracts that commit taxpayer dollars, were under the media microscope at the time I entered the career field. Notable examples of waste, such as the non-standard coffee pots requisitioned for the Lockheed C-5 aircraft, brought about a new career field training focus. In the cited example, is a coffee pot that will withstand an airplane crash really necessary, or would a less durable commercially available coffee pot do the trick? This focus on the big picture and its ties to the questions “What is fiscally responsible” and “Does this pass the common-sense test” is fundamental to the way I explore and evaluate issues.
My masters program honed my ability to assess, comprehend, and discuss technical requirements. While this has been helpful in past roles in the AF and as the general contractor on our home remodeling projects, I am most excited about its value going forward. Councilmembers are asked to review, discuss and ultimately to vote on how to commit taxpayer dollars to an assortment of complex projects that represent “the running of the city”.
I am volunteering for this job because I am confident that I will ask the important, relevant questions, and follow the best thought processes to evaluate the projects that cross my desk.
As a self-employed person, I learned about the interconnectivity of income and expenses, the impact of fees and taxes on the bottom line, the difference between responsible and irresponsible borrowing (and spending), and how to operate within a budget.
I have been fortunate in my life to have role models who instilled values and beliefs that have served me well. My favorite quotes represent their legacy best:
And last, but not least, the lessons of my youth, which continue to be impactful in the way I live my life:
Paid for by "Vivian Olson for Edmonds" Campaign
PO Box 412, Edmonds, WA 98020
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