'Together we have an opportunity to change the culture in our local government and tackle quality of life issues that have been ignored for too long. I can’t do this alone. Who’s with me?'
Why are you running for County Council?
Anyone that knows me knows that I like to give back and want to positively impact my community and I just felt that I could do more and this is the opportunity and now is the time.
Being engaged in the Keep Damascus Rural effort, it really opened my eyes to the extent that our leaders are interested in serving special interests (i.e. developers) over those of their constituents. They oversee, but turn their back to a flawed planning process that approves dense project after dense project that exacerbates traffic congestion, overcrowds the schools and disregards input from the community. It’s time to make the process work for the community.
What are your priorities?
I want our local government to serve the community, I want people to be involved and I want the work of the Council to be transparent. For planning, I want the process to reflect reality and serve a purpose. Too often traffic assessments conclude that traffic is at an acceptable level while the people that live there know that it is not. When a school is found to be over capacity, the developer need only to make a payment to get over that hurdle. We need to appoint Planning Board members that are willing to make decisions that serve the residents.
For education, we need to do more to help teachers teach and students learn. I already know many teachers throughout the county. I can read reports and make funding decisions, but I want to regularly talk to teachers and administrators. I want to get their input on what they need, what works, what doesn’t, I want to understand their challenges and how we can improve. My brother is a MCPS teacher and my kids will be in school shortly. I will never shortchange education.
What makes you different?
I don’t believe there has ever been a candidate like me. First, I am a political outsider and I am not accepting campaign contributions which I have been told is unheard of. What this means is that unlike any of our current County Council members, I have no political motivation to prioritize special interest at the expense of the communities they are elected to serve. Second, I am so motivated to do this and for the right reasons. Long before I ever considered this run I have founded, hosted or assisted with numerous special events that benefits charitable organizations such as the annual holiday party I have hosted for years benefiting the Fighting for Kaiden Foundation, an organization that raises awareness and funds for the battle against SMA (Spinal Muscular Atrophy). I offer free women’s self defense classes at my gym and founded “Girl Power” to empower women in our community. I founded SoundShape, a fun and new exercise program set to music from a live DJ that anyone at any fitness level can do. Since this started, I have been invited to 36 elementary schools around the county to lead SoundShape programs for the kids (and I have a soft spot in my heart for kids). We have also hosted SoundShape on the National Mall, DC in front of the Capitol Building and Washington Monument.
At one of my businesses, MMA & Sport, we sponsor kids and groups of kids that are “at risk”, and through this we have helped them stay out of trouble and bring up their grades in school. However I also volunteer at Elder Care and other elder homes across the county and provide entertainment for the elderly residing there. The elderly are often neglected, but I am able to develop a great rapport with them and enjoy doing it. I feel that people and leadership do not sufficiently prioritize the needs of the elderly and that needs to change. In a nutshell, I’m not a politician. I want to end the political games that serve a few at the expense of the rest. Instead I want to generate interest in local issues by being transparent and involving the community and hearing from them. I want to tackle quality of life issues that have been ignored for too long. Government is supposed to work for the people, not the other way around. Mostly I want to help people and make a positive impact and that’s what drives me everyday.
How can you help small businesses?
This is so important because small businesses employ people, contribute substantially to our county revenue stream and many are struggling throughout the county to simply stay in business. Many are not able to survive. I currently own and run small businesses MMA & Sport and K-Sef Entertainment and have partnerships with so many other small business owners so I know first hand the challenges these business owners face. Excessive regulations are so costly that they result in the closing of some businesses which puts many out of work and causes other businesses to start or move their operations out of Montgomery County along with sorely needed jobs and tax revenues which ultimately shifts the burden to the residential base which we’ve seen in the form of substantially higher property and other taxes. We can solve so many fiscal problems that now exist in our county and strengthen our communities by simply reducing unnecessary regulations and providing tax incentives for businesses to expand their operations locally which would make it easier for them to do so. Our county leadership should do whatever it takes to help our businesses thrive. A rising tide raises all ships.
Owner of K-Sef Entertainment
Founder of Soundscape Music Festival
Partnered on Festival Salvadoreno
Fights Professionally in MMA on National Television
Women Self Defense Program
Free to Public
Founder of ElderCare Days
Performs for the Elderly twice a month
Founder of SoundSHAPE
held on National Mall and 47 Montgomery County Elementary Schools
Founder of Special Needs Dances MoCo.
Partnered on Waterboyz Father Daughter Dance
Co-Owner of Sefcik Brothers Athletics
Partnered on Breeze Thru the Trees
Owner of Exhale Hookah Lounge
Co-Founder of Be Free of it High School Tour
Owner of GoSef Contracting and Consulting
Former Director of Fitness and Health at the National Institute of Standards and Technology
Criminal Law Degree
University of Maryland, College Park
Co-Founder of Damascus Freedom 5k
Founder of Teenscape
Helping keep kids off the streets
Owner of MMA & Sport
Seminars Monthly Free to Military
At Risk Kids Program
provides guidance and training for at risk youth
High Schools and Colleges in MD/DC/VA
Founder of Kicktronix
Founder of Girl Power
Owner of Fight or Fight Haunted Mansion
Co-Founder of Peace of Hearts 5013c
Co-Founder of Rock the Block
PR Greene Growlers Restaurant and Brewery
Commencement Speaker at Damascus High School