Commission application number 31 submitted by Christopher Burns on 06/06/2020

First Name Christopher
Middle Name/Initial A.
Last Name Burns
Voter Unique Identification number 1130475244
Ethnicity White
Gender Male
Age 35-44
Education Level Post-Graduate Degree
Major Pursued Computer Sciences
Submitted Address
City Austin
State TX
Zip 78746
What is your occupation? Software Engineer
Verified Address
City Austin
State TX
Zip 78746
Do you have a spouse or domestic partner? Yes
Spouse/Domestic Partner First Name Sahar
Spouse/Domestic Partner Middle Name/Initial B.
Spouse/Domestic Partner Last Name Burns
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
How did you hear about redistricting/Applicant Review Panel? Social media
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. I'm an engineer working for a large technology company in the area. My daily job requires the analysis of large amounts of technical and non-technical information in order to make carefully calibrated and difficult tradeoffs. Often these tradeoffs involve balancing competing interests and requirements (e.g. different engineering groups, product requirements, customer needs, physical/resource/schedule constraints, etc). I would imagine that the commission's task will require similar efforts.
Disclaimer Agreement Checked
Please describe your ability to be impartial. My view of how to serve the public interest is similar to the philosophy of John Rawls. Briefly, the idea is that in order to make an impartial decision that has a *just* outcome, one must set aside one's particular circumstances and consider whether you yourself would be comfortable being a part of the community - without knowing which member of that community you are. In this instance, I think this means having an outlook that encompasses the interests of everyone in the city, including its future residents, non-voters, those without a home, etc.
Disclaimer Signature Christopher A. Burns
Please describe your appreciation for the City of Austin's diverse demographics and geography. I think what this prompt is trying to say is something like "This city has geographic and demographic attributes that are unique. Do you understand why?" - is this correct? I certainly consider Austin to be a very unique place. I grew up in Houston and lived in Dallas for a few years, and I visit California and London on a regular basis. What I see here that is different owes to several things. One, the youthful and intellectual presence of the university supplies the city with new forward-looking perspectives, future residents (if we're lucky), and a broader perspective on our place in the world. America has many college towns, but so many them are far smaller affairs. The scale of UT-Austin is a fantastic asset. As for the geography, obviously we have hills to the west, not so much hills to the east, and a lovely river through it all. Geographic barriers make for convenient political boundaries, but in our city they align with economic fault lines in a predictable and unfortunate way. We're going to have to decide to what extent council districts should be constrained by or reflect these boundaries.
Please provide your employment history. A short personal history here -- I moved to Austin in 2000 and attended UT Austin for about 8 fun years. I graduated from UT Austin with an MS in computer sciences in 2008, worked at the Texas Advanced Computing Center while in school from 2004-2008. After graduating, I worked for Intel while my wife attended medical school in Dallas (where we lived for three years). We returned to Austin in 2011, I began working for Apple in 2013 shortly after my father died, and bought a house in 2015. Our son, now 2, was born in 2017.
District District 10
Does this application qualify? Yes