Derek believes that the keys to fighting poverty are returning good paying jobs for working class citizens, access to public transportation to get to jobs, and a strong educational system and vocational training to prepare people for those jobs. Reducing unemployment and therefore poverty, will have wide-reaching positive impacts on crime, health, home ownership, thriving neighborhoods, and our tax base and ultimately the well-being of each and every citizen in Cincinnati. Derek is committed to working with all local, regional, and statewide partners to achieve this goal.
Having dedicated his life and career to serving and protecting all people as a police officer, Derek believes creating and maintaining safe neighborhoods must start with a community policing approach, focusing on the relationships between police officers and the public. Derek is also committed to taking on the heroin epidemic that is tearing apart families and driving up property crime.
After learning that youth baseball might be lost forever in Cincinnati’s urban core, Derek raised over $15,000 to help save the West End Reds youth baseball organization which has now grown to 6 teams with over 115 players. He continues to volunteer with the team and help coach the kids. After the tragic murder of Cincinnati Police Officer Sonny Kim, Derek started a fundraising campaign that raised over $207,000 for Officer Kim’s family. Derek will continue to be a tireless advocate for Cincinnati’s kids and families, particularly those most in need.
Derek will focus on building and growing strong neighborhoods and vibrant business districts that provide an opportunity for small businesses to thrive, jobs created and an activated street life with attractive, walkable spaces for people to enjoy.
Derek is currently the Vice-Chair of All-Aboard Ohio, a 501c3 advocacy organization supporting public transportation across Ohio. He is a lifetime member of the NAACP, chairing the local transportation committee, where he introduced a resolution in support of public transportation that was then adopted by the national NAACP as their official policy. Derek recognizes that a robust public transportation system featuring our Metro bus system is vital to connecting working families to jobs, for employers to grow their businesses and for the daily needs of the people, particularly the 20% of households in Cincinnati that do not have access to a car. Alternative transportation, including bike infrastructure is vital to connecting people, neighborhoods, jobs, improving health outcomes, and making our city and region attractive to new residents and businesses. Derek supports a collaborative approach to create a multi-modal regional transportation plan.