Marti has the ability to launch bold endeavors with pragmatic implementation.
As her former co-worker and current colleague, I have been impressed with her innovative ideas that are grounded in a breadth of experience.
~ Bernadette A., Executive Director of regional nonprofit & former Colleague
Marti’s vision for the City of Vallejo [e.g., Participatory Budgeting] and her practical way to implement it inspires and emboldens current and future leaders to continue aiming for greater heights and more courageous public policies.
When it comes to government, Marti has an aptitude for re-awakening people’s right to self-determination and their call for higher levels of government accountability and transparency.
~ Ravi S., Vallejo Resident, PB Vallejo Steering Committee Member & Community Advocate
Marti is a smart and principled planning professional with tremendous energy and enthusiasm for city planning and management.
She is a skilled advisor and negotiator, who is both politically savvy and extremely practical. She works hard and knows how to build consensus and community to get results.
I recommend her highly.
~ Iris S., former Manager of Transportation Planning and Funding, Urban Planner & former Supervisor
Marti Brown is one of those very rare individuals who combines cutting edge vision with world-class substanitive action and achieves sustaining results.
Her remarkable track record as a civic leader in the city of Vallejo, California is a stunning series of achievements empowering citizens with legislative and grassroots tools that create positive change in Democracy and government.
~ Coleen C., former Vallejo Resident, PB Vallejo Steering Committee Member & Community Advocate
Leadership is one of the key factors in how we select Code for America (CfA) Fellowship Partners.
It was evident what an incredible leader Marti was after speaking with her just a few times. Her ability to see the big picture, influence and bring others along with her vision was even more evident when the Vallejo City Council made partnering with CfA a key priority for improving how the city delivers public safety services to its citizenry.
Marti is a proven leader, civil servant and she’ll always stand out in a crowd!
~ Luke N., Former Director of Government Relations, Code for America
I met and started working with Marti in December 2009, just weeks after she was sworn into public office. For three years, we worked to bring a large scale development project to the North end of Mare Island.
During that time, I got to know Marti quite well. Since then, my wife and I have
stayed in touch because we enjoy her company and insight.
I have a very high regard for her creativity, integrity, energy and commitment.
She is a true professional in every sense of the word.
~ Lance B., Retired Real Estate Developer, Author and Artist
There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why? I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?
~ Robert Kennedy
Marti not only dreams of things that never were, but, when she sees things that could make a difference in her Community, she becomes a disrupter. A disrupter is a person who makes life different because she acts. And she brings others along with her.
For more than 40 years, no elected City of Vallejo official could be fiscally responsible. Virtually all of the City’s revenue was spent as dictated by labor contracts written through Binding Interest Arbitration (BIA)
For Marti and her City Council colleagues had the opportunity to spend the City’s money for the benefit of the entire Community and not just for the benefit of the City employees, to act fiscally responsibly, she recognized that BIA must be removed from the Vallejo City Charter.
Despite the fact that there had been a number of unsuccessful attempts to do this in the past, Marti knew it had to happen.
Marti will be the first to point out that she didn’t do it herself. She brought together a number of concerned citizens who were willing to join in her efforts and, against, enormous odds, they succeeded in bringing the Measure to the vote of the people and BIA was removed from the Charter.
The City is still burdened by contracts that were negotiated under BIA, but future City Councils have the opportunity to act with greater fiscal responsibility.
This would not have happened had it not been for Marti’s efforts.
~ J.D. M., Financial Advisor, CPA & Vallejo Resident
Marti is one of the most dedicated, energetic, emotionally intelligent and positive people I've ever worked with.
We worked closely together over a period of years on a major community campaign in Vallejo that required extensive organizing, planning, teamwork, and public relations, as well as the willingness to take a stand for a vision for the City against tough odds.
Though we had the community's support, we were volunteers working against a strong tide of well-funded legal and political opposition. Due in large part to Marti's leadership, we prevailed and the result was a huge win for Vallejo.
Despite the challenges of politics, Marti saw the potential to serve the community as a city council member, and there she chose to take the high road and initiate campaigns that brought residents together to shape the future of Vallejo.
I would highly recommend Marti for any position, especially in communities that want to go from languishing to thriving.
~ Elena D., Esquire & former Vallejo Resident
I met Marti through our work as Redevelopment Planners at SHRA. We quickly became friends because I trust her. Marti doesn't wait for things to happen, she moves forward to make them happen. She is observant in her interactions socially & politically. I admire her continued dedication to the community on all levels.
~ Carly V.H., Affordable Housing Manager
& former Colleague
Marti is no stranger to making tough fiscal choices.
During her tenure on the Vallejo City Council she had to choose between a sustainable future that the city could afford and one that would send it straight back into bankruptcy. It meant reducing employee salaries, health care and pensions; closing fire stations; and reducing city staffing levels in order to keep the doors of city hall open.
It takes experienced leadership to make difficult yet responsible financial decisions especially when they aren't popular. And Marti's got it!
~ Paul N., Retired CFO and former Vallejo Resident
In 2010, then City Councilwoman Brown called out of the blue and asked if a Sonoma State planning class could update Vallejo's entire general plan - for free.
Wishful thinking, I thought, not yet knowing that Marti was a super determined force of nature undeterred by shoestring budgets.
Fast forward to today, Vallejo has adopted its first climate action plan, received a large grant and is comprehensively updating the Vallejo General Plan and other planning documents.
Marti is an optimistic policy wonk who knows how to get things done!
~ Alex H., Urban Planner & Retired Community Development Director
Marti is a natural policy strategist. She easily sees and implements the policy steps necessary to move a project or policy objective forward. And if that doesn't work, she regroups and tries another approach.
Marti has that rare combination of vision, planning and execution. She knows how to get things done.
Marti would be a valuable asset to any management team, especially in government. I recommend her highly.
~ Jim L., Esquire and former Vallejo Resident
Most change happens incrementally, at a pace so slow that it is sometimes difficult to perceive.
Marti is a different kind of leader, inspiring and delivering big leaps forward leaving in her wake a citizenry that thinks differently about themselves, and takes hold of their right to self-determination.
~ Kim T., Retired Executive Director, former Vallejo Resident & PB Steering Committee Member
Marti Brown has the skill and insight to identify and address multi-faceted problems that would confound many.
For example, food insecurity in Vallejo is well documented to include 5 food deserts affecting the lives of thousands of residents. Not satisfied with the way our City was addressing this situation, Marti focused on creative solutions to bring the community together to begin a more inclusive conversation. It was thru her visionary leadership that the stage was set to deepen the conversations that impact the way we address hunger in our community to this day.
Marti is a rare combination of energy and steely resolve to make positive change happen in a sustainable, well thought out fashion. It is and always will be my pleasure to work with her as I hold her ideals in the highest regard.
~ Shelee L., former Program Manager, Community Gardner & Vallejo Resident