Former educator aims for city council

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Former special education teacher Theresa Martens, who is vying for a city council seat in District 2, believes her background as an educator makes her uniquely qualified to serve her fellow Centennial residents.

Martens, 51, the mother of three grown children, is running for the seat that will be vacated by Councilwoman Sue Bosier, who is term-limited.

Martens' opponent in the race is Doris Truhlar.

As someone who has “lived, worked, and raised my family here for the last 27 years,” Martens says she is running for political office for the first time because she “wants to make sure that my family, that your family, has jobs when they get out of school and can afford to buy a home.”

If elected, Martens promises to work for “safe streets and clean parks. I want to help struggling families through promoting local business and nonprofit cooperative programs,” she added. “I want to empower small businesses to grow and flourish and make Centennial an example in innovation and advancements that the rest of the state looks to. And,” Martens says with emphasis, “I want fiscal responsibility.”

As a former special education teacher in the Englewood and Littleton school districts, Martens believes she would bring a “unique skill set” to the 10-member city council.

“I can see the big picture and plan with the end in mind using out-of-the-box common-sense solutions,” she says.

Martens is a graduate of Metro State, where she was named Outstanding Student of the Year in 2000. She holds a bachelor's degree in behavioral science. Before going into teaching, she operated a private preschool.

“I resigned my (teaching) position last year to help take care of our granddaughter and run my campaign,” she says, adding that her biggest surprise on the campaign trail has been discovering “how little information Centennial residents get about how their city is governed. I'm a big proponent of using technology to let the community know what's going on around them.”

The thoughtful, soft-spoken former educator says she felt compelled to step out of the classroom and into the rough-and-tumble political arena because “I want to preserve the vision that the founders had for Centennial as a quiet suburb that appreciates the beautiful outdoor recreation and scenery that Colorado has to offer.”

“I've really enjoyed campaigning and getting out there and listening to the concerns of other Centennial resident,” she adds. “It's been a real learning experience.”