Marti Brown

Biography

Vision.   Strategy.   Planning.   Implementation.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.


~ Albert Einstein
Theoretical Physicist


Marti is a local government practitioner emphasizing innovation and best public policy practices in economic development, urban planning, quality of life issues, municipal budgeting, and public administration.


In August 2016, Marti joined the City of Arvin to become its first Community Development Director. Reporting to the City Manager, she manages the Planning, Building, Code Enforcement, Maintenance & Infrastructure, and Parks & Recreation Divisions, as well as pitch hits with the City Manager on Economic Development projects.


Prior to joining the City of Arvin's executive team, Marti was the Executive Director of the Franklin Boulevard Business Association (‘Association’ (501c6)) and the Franklin Neighborhood Development Corporation ('Corporation' (501c3)) - a community development corporation. In addition to her responsibilities for the day-to-day operations of the Association and Corporation, Marti also managed the development of a Community and Economic Development Plan for the business district and surrounding residential neighborhoods. Recent achievements include:

  • Preparing, submitting and winning a $443,000 streetscape grant from the Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) and leveraging an additional $450,000 in public funds for the same project; and
  • Rebranding the business district from "North Franklin" to "The Historic Monterey Trail District" based on historical evidence that demonstrates Franklin Boulevard was the "Monterey Trail" between Sutters Fort and Monterey during Mexican-California era (1821-1847).


Until January 2014, Marti was also a Councilwoman in the City of Vallejo, California. During her tenure, she spearheaded bringing Participatory Budgeting (PB) to the City of Vallejo for the first city-wide PB process in North America. PB Vallejo won the League of California Cities Helen Putnam Award for Excellence in September 2014. It was also honored as one of the Top Ten Programs in Government Awards in 2015 by the Harvard Kennedy School's Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation.


Marti's other popular civic innovation effort includes bringing Code for America to the City of Vallejo. In the fall of 2014, the City was recognized as a 2015 Code for America Government Partner – a competitive application that Marti initiated in 2013 before leaving office.


In addition to these initiatives, Marti's council tenure was also highlighted by her work on the City's comprehensive General Plan Update including advocating and winning council approval for its first-ever Health Element; her tough but necessary stand on labor contracts; and successfully exiting municipal bankruptcy.

Marti has been featured on Fox News, CBS and California Forward. She’s also interviewed with the Washington Post, New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and Sacramento Bee on such topics as Participatory Budgeting, municipal bankruptcy and public employee pension reform. She has been a public speaker and presenter at several conferences including The American Planning Association, League of California Cities, California American Planning Association, SXSW, Government Finance Officers Association, the Participatory Budgeting Project, the Local Government Commission, City Innovate Summit and Code for America Summit.

Prior to joining the City of Arvin and the Association, Marti spent 10 years as a Redevelopment Planner and Project Manager for the Sacramento Housing & Redevelopment Agency and the City of Berkeley. She was also a Market Manager and Cartographer in the Marketing Division of AT&T.

Marti holds a Master of Business Administration from Hope International University, Master of Arts degree in Geography with a concentration in Resource Management and Environmental Planning from San Francisco State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Studies from World College West. She is a recipient of the The Waterfront Center’s 2005 Clearwater Award for Excellence on the Waterfront. Marti speaks Spanish and Nepali.


For more information about Marti, check out her LinkedIn profile.