Commission application number 260 submitted by Sean Saldana on 08/06/2020

First Name Sean
Last Name Saldana
Voter Unique Identification number 1213416861
Ethnicity Hispanic or Latino
Gender Male
Age 18-24
Education Level Bachelor's Degree
Major Pursued Government
What is your occupation? Director of Communications
Submitted Address
City Austin
State TX
Zip 78757
Verified Address
City Austin
State TX
Zip 78757
Do you have a spouse or domestic partner? No
Are you applying to be the student member of the commission? No
Have you been continuously registered to vote in the City of Austin for the last five years? Yes
Have you voted in 3 of the last 5 City of Austin general elections (or corresponding runoff if applicable)? Yes
Been appointed to a state or city office? No
Been elected to a state or city office? No
Been a candidate for a state or city office? No
Served as an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a political party? No
Served as an officer, employee, or paid consultant of the campaign committee of a candidate for elective state, county, or city office? No
Been a registered state or local lobbyist? No
A paid employee of the City of Austin? No
A person performing paid services under a professional services contract with the City of Austin? No
A person performing paid services under a professional or personal services contract to the City Council of the City of Austin or to any individual member of the City Council of the City of Austin? No
A controlling person of a person performing paid services under a professional or personal services contract to any member of the City Council of the City of Austin? No
Contribute or bundle one thousand dollars ($1,000) or more in aggregate to candidates for City of Austin elective office? No
Please describe your relevant analytical skills. Right now, I work as the Director of Communications at a DC-based strategic communications firm where I write content, develop strategy, and think critically about how to improve performance on social media platforms. More specifically to this, I spend much of my free time writing and researching Austin's history. I write for a local magainze called EASTSide Magazine and I host a podcast called the Austin History Podcast where I take a very naunced look at Austin's history. I have no issue with opening a study and parsing the methodology to ensure I represent results honestly.
Please describe your ability to be impartial. I take a great deal of pride in my ability to be impartial and represent things accurately. I've really honed in on these over the past few years as I've moved further in my career in strategic communications and journalism. I don't consider myself to be particularly reactive and I think I can think clearly and pragmatically about complicated issues.
Please describe your appreciation for the City of Austin's diverse demographics and geography. I was born and raised in East Austin. When people talk about gentrification and minority communities in Austin, they're talking about me, my parents, and grandparents. Some of my earliest memories were on Cesar Chavez. I went to Kealing Middle School. During non-pandemic times, I spend most of my weekeneds pulling files at the History Center, trying to learn more about my community. When I had an internship in Washington DC for the first half of 2019, I'd spend all my time thinking about how much I missed Austin. The importance of this City's history and the task of the commission is not lost on me.
Please provide your employment history. I'm pretty early in my career, but I have a lot of necessary, relevant experience. As I mentioned, my full-time job is in communications -- and so far, in that industry, I've had the opportunity to work under Clinton Administration speechwriters, ghostwrite for authors, and speakers, and even dip my toes into business development. As I've also mentioned, I am also a freelance journalist on the side. I write for a local magazine and host a podcast where I do deep dives on pieces of local history. And perhaps most importantly, I'm no stranger to the lives of Austin's marginalized communities. Many of these gold starts on my resume are fairly recent. For years, I worked in fast-food jobs, retail, and ran Favor orders throughout the City. I've spent quite a bit of time working with and interacting with people who aren't always represented in positions like this -- and I think the ability to bring that perspective is important.
Please provide any other information you wish to be considered during the selection of the most qualified applicants for the Commission. I really love this City. I understand acutely how important this commission is to equity in Austin, Texas for the decade. This is not something I'm applying for to pad out my resume for grad school. I'm applying because I care deeply about my hometown.
How did you hear about redistricting/Applicant Review Panel? Newspaper, Social media
Disclaimer Agreement Checked
Disclaimer Signature Sean Saldana
District District 7
Does this application qualify? Yes