Executive Committee Member Spotlight

City of Phoenix
Incorporated: 1881
Population: 1,447,128
Elevation: 1,117 ft.
County: Maricopa
Area within Limits: 514.9983 sq. mi.

Name, title & city/town: Daniel Valenzuela, Vice Mayor, City of Phoenix
Year elected to office: 2012
Years served on the Executive Committee: New member of the Executive Committee as of May 2015
Hometown: Phoenix, Arizona

Why did you decide to serve in local government?
At a very early age, I felt that committing my life to serving others would be the most honorable thing I could do. I am blessed with the responsibility that comes with serving as a Valley fire fighter and an elected official. In both public service roles, I do not pick and choose whom I serve, I am committed to serving everyone.

What are the biggest challenges facing your city today?
An area that I am passionate about and a challenge I welcome is continuing to help Phoenix become the choice destination to do business. For economic development, we must continue to focus on two areas: competing for talent and ensuring Phoenix is a welcoming and inclusive community.

We also need to continue investment in our infrastructure by forward thinking public transportation options and strengthening our downtown redevelopment. Arizona State University, University of Arizona campuses, the Bioscience Campus and our Convention Center are key to creating an economically thriving Phoenix region. As a city and a state, we must cultivate a welcoming and inclusive culture and place a high priority on investing in education. We need to find solutions to strengthen our education system in order to give our children the best chance for success and create the talent that will attract the high quality, high paying jobs of the 21st century.

What opportunities do you see for your community?
The #yesphx movement is a growing community committed to improving Arizona's startup ecosystem by increasing collaboration and creativity. This effort is helping to make Phoenix the most welcoming and generous community for entrepreneurs and innovators. Phoenix is home to nationally- and internationally-ranked co-working spaces, incubators and higher education institutions. We have the opportunity to make our city known as the hub for innovation, technology, and research. Overall, I'm thrilled about the progress our ecosystem has made with so many valuable, game-changing additions to the tech, innovation and startup scene. In previous years, when we used to see big announcements on a quarterly basis, these economic developments are now happening weekly.

What are you most proud of during your time in office?
As I close out my first four-year term and begin the next one in January, I am proud of the work my colleagues and I on the Phoenix City Council and the entire City of Phoenix team have accomplished. We strengthened our fire and police departments, moved our economy forward, and continue to strengthen and revitalize our neighborhoods with positive infrastructure investments, including the passage of Proposition 104.

During my first four-year term, my proudest moment was my vote on February 26, 2013- when my colleagues and I strengthened the city's anti-discrimination ordinance to protect members of the LGBTQ and disabled community. There is nothing more fundamental than fairness.

Why is the League important to cities and towns in Arizona?
Having a collective organization of all 91 cities and towns is important so we can help each other and learn from one another to make our state the best it can be. We also bring a local perspective to public policy decisions and immediate impacts to the quality of life of residents.

League of Arizona Cities and Towns
1820 W. Washington St.
Phoenix, AZ  85007
Phone: 602-258-5786
Fax: 602-253-3874

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