Tekesha is a "do-er" when it comes to community
safety. As a trained community mediator, she has often facilitated dialogue with law enforcement and has helped build an understanding between them and the community during turbulent times.
She is also a co-founder of Hagerstown Cease Pain,
a movement that aims to end suffering locally by
finding help for those struggling with addictions and
encouraging those in gangs to seek mentors.
Tekesha understands that a community functions
best when all of its members participate in connecting with each other, collaborating on ideas, and taking time to empathize with each other's grievances. This is the type of community that fosters growth both economically and socially. Tekesha sees that our city is capable of achieving these goals; as she always says, "Hagerstown is good ground."
As a trained community mediator, Tekesha already has
experience in helping small businesses grow by
providing free facilitation of team meetings for local
business owners and staff. With deep connections
in small businesses and the city's arts scene, Tekesha
knows that building a thriving community has everything to do with supporting local entertainment and commerce.
With her experience in helping those struggling with addictions and teaching writing workshops at drug recovery houses, Tekesha is very familiar with the difficulties presented by the opioid epidemic. She understands that the focus must be on rehabilitation, and resources like the drug recovery houses must be prioritized.
As she is well connected with many local small businesses, Tekesha is familiar with the economic struggles caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Unlike other candidates, who focus their economic plans on the building of a new stadium first, Tekesha understands that the priority must be placed on recovery. The stadium is an idea, but it should not be pursued if it means leaving struggling Hagerstonians behind in the aftermath of a pandemic.
Tekesha also understands the importance of public health and safety, and emphasizes that every step of recovery must be carefully taken in the interest of a healthy community. Please follow state and local directives about mask wearing and social distancing.
Tekesha sees the pain in her community every day caused by systemic racism and injustice. She believes in showing strength in community, which is why she participates in local marches and sit-ins with her church. Tekesha knows that, if we work hard on building relationships, connections, and dialogue, Hagerstown can be made into a national example of a safe and supportive community. As a shining beacon, Hagerstown's success can inspire change elsewhere.
Tekesha has been a youth advocate for her entire adult life. She knows the importance of pairing local young people with mentors, as she has experience being a mentor herself. Young people must be given a platform and must be listened to- after all, they are the future of Hagerstown.
Hagerstown is a city of beautiful diversity in all aspects of life. From race to ethnicity to sexual orientation to religion and more, our community is truly a rainbow coalition. However, as a city where nearly 20% of the population are people of color, Tekesha finds it disappointing that the current city council fails to reflect our diversity. If elected, she would be the second ever person of color to serve on Hagerstown City Council, and she recognizes the importance to serve in that position as a representative of her entire community- Black, White, Hispanic, Latino, Asian-American, Native American, and more- and as an inspiration to youth of color, showing them that they too can be a part of local government.
Above all, Tekesha wants to serve on city council as a voice for the voiceless and as a representative of those who are not represented. She wants to be an instrument of the people, not a tool of big businesses or other forces that disregard the local community. Tekesha Martinez will be your city councilor.