Having lost a race for an at-large seat last year, Brienne Brown is running again for a spot on the Whitewater City Council—this time against incumbent Chris Grady.
Grady, 56, of 318 W. North St., said he has held the District 3 seat for nearly four years. He is an inventory manager with CNH Industrial in Racine.
Brown, 45, of 156 N. Fremont St., is a UW-Whitewater lecturer in health education, as well as an editor and grant writer. She does not believe families and young professionals are well-represented on the council.
Brown lost to incumbent James Allen by 76 votes last April. In an interview this week, she said she did not expect to win against someone who had that much experience—Allen at the time had about 10 years of council experience and 25 years with the Whitewater Community Development Authority.
One of Brown’s top priorities is bringing a community-owned grocery store to Whitewater. Brown said she has become an expert on the subject in her role as one of the founding members of the Whitewater Grocery Co.
She wants the grocery store to be accessible because the community has a lot of single mothers, seniors on fixed incomes, and children who qualify for free and reduced-price lunches. She said she would recuse herself from any votes on the Whitewater Grocery Co.
Grady, too, said bringing a grocery store to town is a priority. He said he was “kind of disappointed” it hasn’t happened yet.
He said he has enjoyed representing the people of his district.
Looking forward, Grady said housing also would be a focus for the council, especially with a decreasing student population at UW-W. The council needs to figure out what to do with vacancies in student rentals, he said.
Beyond the grocery store, Brown said she wants more public spaces and more safe spaces people can use for walking and biking.
Grady and Brown’s race is the only contested council race.
Three other races feature incumbents running for their own seats: council President Patrick Singer for an at-large seat, Carol McCormick for District 1 and McKinley Palmer, a UW-Whitewater freshman recently appointed to fill an open seat in District 5.
The election is April 2.