Hey Redmond! Thank you for your support!

While I might wish the outcome were different, I am grateful for the opportunity and proud of the support I have received from so many people. Having met so many residents and learned more about the things that can help improve their way of life helps drive my desire to continue to contribute to the community. While my run in this race is ending, the future remains bright.

I also want to congratulate David Carson and Carlos Jimenez for making it through the primary. I also want to thank Shad Ansari for running; while we don’t immediately know the impact we have had on the lives of others until much later, we will look back and be thankful that we did it.

Osama Hamdan

#MuchLove #Redmond #CityCouncil #Election2019 #Vote #PNW

Why I am running for City Council

On June 24th, I officially announced that I am running for office. I reflected a lot on this decision and realized it was critical for me to contribute to making our city a better place to live. I don’t think of myself as a politician, but rather a citizen that wants to see change.

Redmond is growing fast and we need to work together as a community to better decide on what we want to see from our city in the future. We all live here because we love our city. We have one of the most educated and diverse cities in the region and a history we need to build on to make it better. 

I have been fortunate enough to build a career running some of the most complex projects in the tech industry and I want to use my skills to help build a better Redmond. Working with partners in the city and with others in the region, we can improve our quality of life and continue to build a place we are proud to call home.  

In the last few weeks, many residents have shared with me their frustration in how we are managing our growth and not seeing things improve. As a city, we need to surface these issues and find the best solutions for them. From traffic concerns, safe pedestrian access, and improved bike routes to more parks to support the growing population. These are just some of the issues we need to address and we need to build plans and work with our neighboring cities to ensure these plans work together to provide us with a more livable city.  

Another critical problem that I want to help address is the issue around lower income residents.We need to ensure that we provide a livable wage, better housing options and address what will become a more serious homeless problem in our region. Seattle’s housing problems will become Redmonds housing problem if we don’t help Seatltle solve their issues. Seattle drug use problem will become Redmond’s drug problem if we do not help them solve it.  

I plan to work closely with residents to better understand our issues as well as help build a community that represents all of it’s diverse communities. We will become a better community when we care for each other. Last week, I witnessed a car stall at an intersection in downtown and pulled over to help, but before I got to the car, there were already 4 people there helping.  This showed me that we are willing to do what it takes to help others and made me more proud to live here.

This week, primary ballots were mailed out, I want to encourage everyone to vote for who they believe is the best candidate for the job. I want to be the candidate that earns your support. Feel free to reach out to me directly with any questions or concerns you have about issues you want to see addressed. With your support, I hope to make it to the general election and continue to work to earn your vote in November. Together we will build a better community and country.  

Thank you for your support,

Osama

Connecting a new Redmond

I am excited and proud to announce that I am running for Redmond City Council. As I reflect on the last few years since I first ran for office, I have watched as Redmond continues to grow.  When I first ran for City Council in 2017, it was clear then that Redmond was going through a lot of growing pains. Traffic was at its worst since I moved to the area, buildings were going up like weeds and people were moving to the area in droves.  

Two years later and things have improved in many of these areas, we are closer to having the first steps of true mass transit, many of the buildings that were going up are done or almost done and the community has continued to grow at a fast pace. But we are still missing a lot of what we need to be a world class city. We are not yet meeting the goals of #ConnectingRedmond I had set two years ago. 

Redmond is still the small town with growing pains.  We have not had much progress on new parks for our growing community and traffic continues to be challenging. There is still a lot of work to do to ensuring we are building a world class city that is a model in the Pacific Northwest.  

The current city council and Mayor have done a good job trying to keep up with the changes, but it is time we move into the next phase of building the Redmond of future that keeps its roots in the past.  

I am excited at so many young and diverse candidates challenging incumbents looking to make change. Our city needs to build a more inclusive future that cares for all of its citizens. As a candidate for city council, I want to help drive that change. How we work within our city to enable affordable housing, how we work with other cities in the region to address the growing number of people getting priced out of the market and how we ensure that all of our residents have a voice in the future of Redmond is critical. 

My extensive experience in the tech industry has taught me that everything we do today can be improved. We need to focus more on the lives of residents and how we can improve their quality of life. We need to listen to residents on the issues that make their day to day experiences difficult.  

My goals for the future of Redmond are simple: connecting our residents to their government, ensuring we have the services to support all of our residents, young and old, and building a community that we can be proud to leave to our future generations. 

I am looking forward to this election season to help drive us closer to building a vision for Redmond we can all be proud of. Join me on the journey to vet all the candidates, including myself, on what we will do to achieve the goal of a future Redmond we can all call home. The first opportunity will be the Primary in August and I am excited for the opportunity to be part of that change. 

Thank you for your support,

Osama

What matters to you?

Over the next few weeks, I want to hear from Redmond Residents on what are the most important issues you want to see your government focus on. City government is a reflection of its community and I want to ensure that I represent the people of the city, feel free to contact me directly at theotherosama@gmail.com and let me know what you are looking for in your city government.

You should run for Office

In 2016, we all learned an interesting lesson, literally anyone who wants to can run for office. Many may not have liked the result of the presidential election or the many things that happened since, but the reality stays true: anyone can run for office. I did it myself in 2017 when I ran for City Council in Redmond. I can say it was an eye-opening experience from a political perspective and a rewarding one because I got to meet so many new people and got the support of so many people that had faith in me.

So here we are in 2019, and the opportunity presents itself again with the deadline to submit your name in the hat to run for office coming up quickly. Many of the people I see every day have asked me if I plan to do it again and I said I was considering it. While I have not made a decision one way or another, in the process I realized that there are not enough people running. Two years ago was unprecedented in that every Redmond council position was contested, including two in the primary. This showed a clear drive that some people see a need for change in our politics.

While there is still time to consider running for office, I want to tell any and all of my fellow Redmond residents if you have ever toyed with the idea that you could run, then you should run. This reminded me of the day I decided to first run for office, it happened to be the day before starting to fast for the month of Ramadan. I was stressing so many things: Could I do it? Could I spend the time needed? Would I get the support of my family? Would people seriously consider me a viable candidate? I remember waiting until the last 15 minutes of the filing deadline before I finally made the decision to do it. While there were a lot of things going through my mind at the time, there was one thing that pushed me over the edge to go for it. It was simple: I would only regret NOT doing it.

In order for us to have a true representation of the people in our government, we need more people to run, we need more opinions and we need new, young, energetic people who can help take our city forward and build a new more modern city. The only regret you will have is not taking the leap.

So what do you do next? It’s easier than you think, complete and file your “Declaration of Candidacy” on the “Running for office” page on the King County Elections website. It has all the details you need to take that next step: kingcounty.gov/depts/elections/for-candidates.aspx.

About Osama

Coming to the US as a refugee with my parents at the age of 7, I have had all the opportunities of the American dream. My father always instilled in his children that hard work is the way we can achieve that dream. He started his first job as a janitor in a hospital outside Detroit, eventually getting a job on the Ford assembly line and ultimately opening his own business. His goal was to provide for his family which led to my college education and me joining Microsoft more than 20 years ago. I moved to Redmond because I believed it would provide the best experience for my family. My oldest boys have grown up playing baseball on the RedWest Little League and now are both on the Redmond High School Mustangs Football team. My daughter plays on the Redmond Girl Select Basketball team. These experiences have helped my kids build a strong sense of community. They are not just players on a team, but are part of a team that cares for each other. These are the same experiences I want for all our residents. Throughout my life I have built a passion for identifying and solving problems. From when I worked for my father in his business to building and running strong teams at Microsoft. I pride myself on understanding the issues from different perspectives and coming up with solid long-term solutions. Today, Redmond is a great place to live, but we can’t take it for granted. We are at a key turning point and how we manage through the challenges we face will define the Redmond of the future. Traffic and other pressures are only getting worse and we need to do better at solving those problems. Redmond is the kind of community my father dreamed about when he came to America. It has opportunity for everyone and offers a lifestyle where we can raise our families and enjoy our community. Those are the values we all share in Redmond, and with my background and experience, I will work to build a community that lives up to those values.