Council-watchers endorse Seren for mayor
Having attended most Cleveland Heights City Council and Committee of the Whole meetings since 2015, we have seen Kahlil Seren in action several times a month for close to seven years. In disposition and demeanor, he is well-suited to public office.
We have witnessed Kahlil taking brutal and often undeserved criticism from certain council colleagues without reacting defensively. It’s a rare quality, and one that would well serve many elected officials and others in authority. When asked how he does it, he replied quietly, “Well, I meditate a lot.” And, he said at a meet and greet this summer, “I have learned to pick my battles.”
As a biracial man raised by a lesbian couple and married to a biracial woman, Kahlil understands and values the precious racial, gender, economic and social diversity of Cleveland Heights. He knows it is rare, even within Cuyahoga County.
He has worked to strengthen ties between the city and the board of education. He is a champion of government transparency, and was the first council member to insist that the committee meetings he chaired be videotaped and posted on the city’s YouTube channel. Kahlil knows that our city’s government belongs to the people of Cleveland Heights, not to special interests.
Kahlil speaks authoritatively on complex policy matters because his education, intellect and experience have prepared him to do so. He has been criticized for his independence, but follows his conscience and consistently seeks solutions that are for the greater good. Sometimes this disturbs those who customarily seek the status quo. On the other hand, perhaps they are unaware: Kahlil Seren is the only mayoral candidate who has voted on six successive Cleveland Heights Police Department budgets. He voted “yes” each time.
Kahlil is smart, articulate, accomplished and well-qualified. He is the opposite of thin-skinned. We think his self-assurance, which we have watched grow over the years, comes from a deep understanding of his place in a diverse, creative, sometimes fractious community.
Kahlil’s colleagues, co-workers, mentors and even two former opponents in the Cleveland Heights mayoral race have endorsed him, so knowledgeable people seem to agree. Please join us in voting for a youthful, energetic, and future-oriented mayor for Cleveland Heights: Kahlil Seren.
Susan Miller, Carla Rautenberg and Deborah Van Kleef
Susan Miller, Carla Rautenberg and Deborah Van Kleef are longtime Cleveland Heights residents.