My platform for City Council At Large says, “Ask the questions.” The right questions lead to solutions because they make you think, investigate, seek the right information, and follow the logic that ultimately leads to growth. Questions lead to relationships, and we could all use a dose of that. They also lead to a better understanding, stronger progression, and deeper perspective and peace. Questions bring quality to our lives that is needed to help our city and community — our village.

I apply my training as a medical professional to look at everyday issues using the nursing process: assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, and evaluation. This can be applied to small-business and housing growth.

We have a beautiful city that loves and needs tourists. Tourism supports our small-business owners, who bring unique offerings. We must make sure we are their friend.

Why isn’t our city helping our businesses by encouraging “HUBzones,” or “Historically Underutilized Business Zones,” a program of the U.S. Small Business Association? Spirit Valley would be a perfect art and antique district, revitalizing the area and offering tourists more options to go with the brewery district.

This problem analysis may also be applied to help young couples trying to lay down roots in our city for their families, many of them first-time homebuyers.

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Health disparities across the city must be addressed. Health comes in different shapes and sizes: mental health as well as physical health, and environmental health, which encompasses housing and the safety of these categories.

Public safety and empowering law enforcement to keep the peace and uphold the law is also part of this. We live in a time when distrust and polarizing opinions are rampant. We must and should be able to turn to our authorities for help. Our police force may not be perfect, but there are so many men and women who have dedicated their lives for the public good, who have honest and upright intentions. No one or one profession is perfect, and no one carries out their jobs perfectly. There are good and bad in all areas of life — but more good than bad.

Feeling safe is needed for tourism to thrive. With the expansion of our hospitals, there will be more visitors who should feel safe downtown. The homeless and panhandling situation has gotten out of control. This must be addressed.

We are strong and vibrant and can achieve immeasurable things when we are together, working and living in unity. Our city can be vibrant and full of life and opportunities for all. Our city, like our Great Lake, can be a powerful, moving force full of progressive industry, health care, entertainment, and growth.

As a city councilor, I will approach issues unafraid of challenge and with compassion, constructive consideration, confidence, consistency, commitment, and conviction!

I am not originally from this fine city, just as our mayor is not from Duluth. That does not, however, diminish my appreciation or concern by any stretch. I bring a fresh, transparent, analytical, common-sense approach to situations. I will listen, hear, and represent the people of Duluth with honesty, integrity, and transparency. I will ask the questions to get the answers the people deserve. My focus is housing, public safety, and the security and unity of our community.

Nancy Stam is one of eight candidates running for two open At Large seats on the Duluth City Council. Four of the candidates will advance from the Aug. 10 primary to Election Day on Nov. 2. All candidates were invited by the News Tribune Opinion page to write columns.