Bloom says she will rely on grassroots support in race against Wilson

Joan Bloom speaks to supporters Wednesday.
Barbara Tipton tells the group why she is supporting Bloom's candidacy.

Citizen activist Joan Bloom officially launched her campaign for Edmonds City Council Wednesday night, stating that she intends to rely on grassroots support in her race against incumbent Councilmember DJ Wilson.

At her campaign kickoff in downtown Edmonds, the long-time Edmonds resident and environmentalist said that she is committed to limiting her campaign fundraising to $5,000 because she wants to spend more time talking about the issues and less time fundraising. However, she acknowledged that “I’m running against someone who’s going to raise a lot of money, who’s a career politician.”

Bloom ticked off several reasons for seeking elected office, including her observation that the City of Edmonds has exhibited “poor stewardship” of citizen tax dollars.

“I’m running for office because some politicians focus on the short-term benefit to them in terms of making decisions… to the expense of the long-term stewardship of our environment, our city and what is best for our city,” Bloom said.

She also cited the “adversarial relationship” between the mayor’s office and the councilmembers, between the councilmembers themselves and between staff members and citizens. “I love this city. We have so much here,” Bloom said. “If we can cooperate and work together, we can make this work, even in this really bad economic time.”


  1. Joan is all about Edmonds, not herself. She is so different from her opponent who is the most self serving I have seen on the council! By voting for Joan we will be bringing honor, civility and altruism back on the city council. Unlike her opponent who does not do or say anything that is not self promoting she has Edmonds at heart and I trust her to do what is right for Edmonds. I have known her for 8 years and heard her message and I know that she is a rational, passionate and honorable person. I deplore the fact that it seems that the amount of money raised is portrayed as the eligibility of a candidate by the media. I hope that the citizens of Edmonds will elect people that are non career politicians or have proven that they put Edmonds first in their decisions such as Lora Petso, Diane Buckshnis and Joan Bloom. These people are not in anyone’s pocket and have no political aspirations. They are willing to donate their energy and time for the betterment of Edmonds and they deserve our vote regardless of the amount of money they raise.

  2. Betty, I’m going to strongly disagree with your characterization of Joan’s opponent without further comment because I don’t want to encourage that kind of deplorable negativity.

    Having said that, I wouldn’t worry too much about the money factor. Lora Petso eliminated incumbent Ron Wambolt from the 2009 primary after spending $0 dollars and doing virtually no campaigning. Granted, she was able to re-use campaign signs from a previous campaign, and she lost in the general election, but I think it shows that people are not particularly impressed by how much money is raised by a candidate.

    I like what I hear from both Joan and her opponent and I wish I could vote for both of them. They have both run clean campaigns and have been clearer than most of the other candidates in articulating what they would do if elected.

  3. I want to thank Sue Bauer and council member Steve Bernheim for hosting my kick-off party. It was a lovely party in their historical home in downtown Edmonds. Thanks also to Diane Buckshnis for your guidance and support, and for your presence and assistance at the party.

    For everyone who attended, thanks so much for your support, and thanks for being witness to my first ever campaign speech!


    You have done an excellent job of summarizing my reasons for running for office. Thank you so much for attending the party and documenting it on myedmondsnews.

  4. Joe, please keep an open mind about whether Joan’s opponent runs a “clean campaign”. During the council meeting, he’s mischaracterizating our deliberations and describing council members as “jerks” in public on-line chats rooms.

    Please understand, it’s difficult for other members of the city council to pay attention to him or to treat him with respect while he misstates what council members are saying and writes on-line abuse about his colleagues at the very same minute we’re trying to deliberate with him at the council meeting.

    “Council bickering” is a frequent topic, but folks rarely say what starts it, or suggest how to end it.. What do you think ?

    Should council members simply ignore his disrepectful public on-line chats during council meetings and thereby allow it to continue, or should inappropriate behavior in on-line chat rooms during council meetings be a factor in YOUR vote ?

    “Look at Bernheim: starting the negative campaign just because I called him a jerk.”

  5. Joan –

    Having moved back into the area recently, I was pleased to have met your acquaintance at Harry’s coffee hour earlier this month.

    In reading the Edmonds News, your astute observations in the “adversarial relations” between officials and “poor stewardship” of tax payer dollars are indicative of most traditional organizations, often referred to as “silo” institutions.

    In going back to the basic rules in Community Service 101, being competent first requires a willingness/ability to become aware. Secondly, it is important to recognize that solutions cannot be found in systems which created the problem(s). In order to have Rapport, safety, trust and respect is required.

    With that in mind, I sense you have the skills needed to be a great leader and it’s refreshing to see how passionate and caring you are.

    As I become better acquainted with you and the other candidates, I wonder if all three of you could share your vision and priorities for Edmonds (as well as the Region), in an online article. Using Workforce Development, Business Development, Infrastructure, and Quality of Life as an example of the building blocks often used in assessing a community’s strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (S.W.O.T.), can you provide us with some ideas on how you would go about building bridges that lead towards sustainable living? I see this as being of great value in preparations for the upcoming Strategic Plan. Thank you!

  6. Steve I do have an open mind about this election. I’m going to choose not to respond to your comments here because I’d rather these comments focus on Joan rather than her opponent. Between now and the election we can probably find a better article where we can resume this conversation.

  7. I am curious about Joan’s views on the Harbor Square Redevelopment Plans that the Port of Edmonds is working on. There has been a lot of talk about commercial development in Edmonds as a means of bringing additional revenue to the city, and this project appears to be easily the largest envisioned by anyone.

  8. Don (comment 1),
    Thanks for your wishes, and for your agreement with my reasons for running for office.

    As far back as when I was on the Citizen Group of 33 in the summer of 2006, I have been open to exploring the option of mixed use, such as proposed, on the Harbor Square properties. I have never supported an “Urban Village” on the Antique Mall properties. And, if you have read my article,
    you are aware that area is on a documented earthquake liquefaction zone, making such a development not possible, according to Edmonds code (ECDC).

    I appreciate the work of Port staff in putting these possible plans together. It has been an open process, inclusive of citizen input, and, hopefully, has addressed all environmental issues of that site. My main concern is that the plans are for the future, perhaps 10-15 years from now depending upon when our economy recovers, not for now. My preference would be that we focus on what else can be done for ECONOMIC development of the Port properties now.

    I plan to write more about this on, but for now, please see a discussion on agile design:

  9. David,

    I enjoyed meeting you at the recent Coffee with Harry also. And thanks for your observation about my leadership qualities. Greatly appreciated.

    I can’t say that I will be addressing what you request, but I will continue to write on my website You are welcome to comment on any of the articles.

  10. I purposely limited my question to the Port property south of Dayton. Nobody has put forth anything close to a sensible plan for the Antique mall, so there’s not much to say about that.

    I liked your thoughtful answer and read your articles. I’m also a big fan of Christopher Alexander and Stewart Brand. I own both those books. I look forward to hearing more from you on these ideas, especially on what you see as step one toward these goals. Thanks for the prompt answer!

  11. Joe,

    Your consistent super strong reaction to any criticism of Wilson is interesting and somewhat puzzling as you seem to be a nice and straight kind of guy in other respects that I have observed.

    Let me ask you this: Do you not get any clues concerning your candidate’s work attitudes? Do you see a single City Council member on his list of supporters (mostly out of towners)? Are you aware he labeled all six other members as “untrustworthy”? Doesn’t that make you wonder at least just a little bit about his ability to work with others?

    Joe, I believe we need our Council members to respect each other and to work together harmoniously. And that is simply not a DJ attribute! He has a record of reckless and thoughtless lack of consideration for other people including all Council members!

  12. I have reacted strongly to criticism of Mr. Wilson that is based on innuendo and irrelevant stuff. I also have a strong dislike of negative campaigning. Neither he nor Joan is “my candidate” and I have harshly criticized him when I thought he was wrong.

    But I’ll probably regret responding to your question because this article is about Joan Bloom and should stay focused on her, not her opponent. Joan is an interesting candidate who has laid out her views very clearly. There’s plenty of material to comment on if you’d be willing to focus what she has to say.

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