Shank: The Importance of Public Service

Upon invitation from Barstow Memorial School, Dr. Michael Shank discusses why he’s running for Vermont State Senate as an Independent Candidate, his plan for a resilient Rutland County, and his first experience with government.

Here’s Dr. Shank’s Q&A with Barstow Memorial School:

1. Your name, political affiliation, candidacy sought, & home town
Michael Shank, Independent, Vermont State Senate, Brandon
My bio:
My campaign:
My policy plans:
More on me: I’m a policymaker, professor, regional planner, problem-solver, farmer, mentor, and more. My full biography here.

2. Why you’re running for this position
I think about everything through the lens of sustainability. Meaning, can we sustain these policies for the next 5 decades and the next 5 generations? Since policy decisions require financial, human and natural resources, we need to ask: Do we have enough resources to last? Are we utilizing them well? These are just two of the questions I apply to personal and policy decisions. In many cases, we’re not sustainably building for tomorrow. I want to change that. That’s why I’m running to represent the Rutland District in the Senate. More on why I’m running and my qualifications here.

3. Why you are qualified/better than others for the position
Protecting our infrastructure – physical, economic and social – from shocks to the system should be everyone’s priority. It’s compromised by increasingly extreme weather, extreme economic hardship and extreme ideologies. Committing to a repair and reinvestment strategy, then, should be on everyone’s agenda as the shocks aren’t going away. We’ll see harder rains, heavier winds and frequent flooding. We’ll see more pandemics and more unemployment. We’ll see more partisanship. And if we’re not careful, it’ll further erode our infrastructure, and most importantly, our faith in each other. This work, then, must be front and center for us. It’s what I’m thinking about constantly in my daily work with major cities around the world that are prioritizing resilience. Now, we must prioritize this, too. More on how I’ll use my municipal expertise and resilient and sustainability knowledge in Rutland County here.

4. Your earliest recollection of government importance, role or experience
The story I mention in the video is further shared here in the Rutland Herald. Take a look.

(Source of video thumbnail image: Johanna Goodman)