Rhanna Kidwell


Rhanna KidwellI am running for one of the nine positions on the Newton Charter Commission to be elected on November 3rd at the city-wide election.

In creating a Charter Commission, Newton has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to examine our form of government and consider improvements. This is an exciting time for our community!

Longstanding Activist for Charter Reform

I became involved in the effort to reform Newton’s charter six years ago. In 2009-10, I co-chaired the charter study conducted by the League of Women Voters of Newton. Beginning in 2012, I chaired the League’s signature drive to get the question of a charter review on the ballot in Newton.

Relevant Skills and Knowledge

Newton voters will want charter reform recommendations that reflect best practices and the best ideas of our community, and I can bring experience with both to the charter commission.

    • Through the League’s charter study, I have learned a great deal about how our city government compares to that of other Massachusetts cities.
    • While collecting signatures, I’ve had the opportunity to talk to over 1,000 Newton voters about the ballot question, and I’ve listened to their thoughts about our city government.

Experience with Process Design and Teamwork

For Newton’s charter commission to succeed, it will have to rely on a thorough, disciplined, transparent charter review process. In both my professional and volunteer background, I have experience in project management, process design, and strategic planning. I can help design and implement a process that will lead to worthy recommendations and voter acceptance.

Through my work in the community, I am experienced in the elements of successful teamwork: collaboration, consideration of diverse ideas and opinions, and valuing and respecting all the participants. Whether leading the Girl Scout troop in their Silver Award quest or serving on the Y Board, my goal is always the same: that we achieve our shared goal and come out stronger as an organization and as individuals.

An Open-Minded Candidate

I am not committed to any specific positions for charter reform (see “The Issues” for more details). I am committed to the process for gathering public input and studying alternatives. While I was instrumental in helping the League adopt specific positions on charter reform, I believe the charter commission will need to do its own work to formulate recommendations.

Please Vote for Me on November 3rd!

I would like to work with you to make sure Newton takes full advantage of the charter commission opportunity. I have been engaged in the charter reform effort since 2009, and I’m personally thrilled that we will finally have the opportunity for a thoughtful review of our government structure. I hope to see this effort through to the end by serving on the charter commission. Together, we can ensure that Newton retains its strengths while updating our government for the next generation and beyond.