That’s why she’s declaring her candidacy for the Sparks City Council Ward 1 seat in 2008, to be vacated by Councilman John Mayer who will have reached his term limits by then.
Ratti will hold a campaign kickoff at the Great Basin Brewing Co. at 846 Victorian Ave. tonight from 6 to 9 p.m. to let the public know she cares about downtown Sparks.
Ratti, president and owner of Strategic Management Services in Sparks, said her experience with for- and non-profit businesses motivates her to make the city “a better place to live.”
“I’ve worked with government to get things done and it seemed like a natural transition (to run for council),” she said.
Her small business, which provides management and consulting services, said it has given her a solid platform to make the important decisions facing the Sparks City Council.
Ratti said if elected, she would work to ensure that Sparks’ neighborhoods remain safe and that the residents have convenient access to shopping centers and businesses to meet their needs.
“I want to reduce the time they have to spend in their cars,” she said.
Redevelopment is another aspect Ratti plans to spend time upon, especially since Ward 1 encompasses the Victorian Square Redevelopment District. She said the Trammel Crow condominium project should continue so as to help the city’s financial needs.
“It’s a project where the economy has softened,” she said. “I think we need to move forward with that developer for the time being so the project can be successful.”
In addition to her small business, Ratti also is involved with various youth programs and education. In the past, she served as special projects coordinator for Partners in Education and as executive director of Gang Alternatives Partnership.
Though she has no children of her own, she has been active with her niece’s activities, including her role as director of Girl Advocacy for the Girl Scouts of the Sierra Nevada.
As a councilmember, she hopes to continue her work to provide community activities for youth.
“We absolutely need to make sure (Sparks) Parks and Recreation has the resources it needs to make sure all kids have the activities they need,” Ratti said. “And I would want to make sure the city is partnering with these great non-profits to use resources to the best. The community has the facilities, and the non-profits have the programs. We need to partner these together...to benefit kids.”
Ratti spent her childhood in Sparks, a place where she says there’s “a lot of life,” especially downtown with all the events the city hosts. She attended the University of Nevada, Reno, where she received her bachelor’s degree in art with a minor in journalism. She received her master’s degree in non-profit administration from the University of San Francisco.
Ratti, 38, is married to James Cavanaugh, her partner at Strategic Management Services.