If elected to city council, first-time candidate John Allen Tate believes his strong business background will help him be a “good steward in guiding the city's continuing success.”
Tate, 46, lives in Piney Creek in east Centennial and is running for the District 4 city council seat currently held by term-limited Ron Weidmann.
He has two opponents in the race, William Turner and Charles Whelan.
As general manager and vice president of Littleton-based Investive Building Projects, Tate heads up a strategic business unit for the $100 million private company, developing and managing capital projects related to improving infrastructure.
“My company has provided for many municipalities and state agencies important projects that address critical needs in such a way that they are self-funding, without requiring the use of scarce capital,” he explains.
Besides having an executive leadership role and the requisite experience with budgets and the bottom line, Tate also writes and negotiates contracts and manages deliverables for cities like Centennial.
“When working in a technical field, you get pretty used to not having all of the answers,” he says. “A core management skill of mine is the ability to bring together a team, whether of tradesmen or stakeholders, to identify possible solutions to a problem and choose the best path forward.”
Tate believes his business background allows him to “connect with folks of all levels and interests, from the CFO to the boiler mechanic” and believes that “understanding that the unexpected happens is part of being prepared.”
“In a capacity as an elected representative, you have the dual role of trustee and delegate,” Tate adds. “Citizens are looking for someone with my background, experience and skills to roll up my sleeves and tackle an issue in depth acting on their behalf and best interest.”
Since making the decision to run for council in July, Tate has made an effort to learn “about the city, its history and philosophy, and most importantly, the expressed views and needs of its residents.”
To this end, he says he has met with hundreds of city residents, going door-to-door conducting personal interviews, engaging HOAs and attending city-sponsored events and meetings.
Born in Nashville, Tenn., to a professor and nurse, Tate said his upbringing taught him “the fundamental value of education, respect for other people and an interest helping a community champion its identity.”
He has an engineering degree from Duke University and his wife, Kathleen, is a surgeon. The couple has three children.
“I think the city is going to get bigger,” he says. “The challenge will be attracting new businesses and creating additional revenue.”
Tate said he supports the 2G ballot initiative. “The city has an asset (its fiber network) and needs to find ways to generate income while it's still worth something.”
If elected, Tate promises to “work diligently to maintain our city's successes, like a low crime rate and high levels of customer satisfaction.”
“It would be disingenuous for me to say anything negative about the city because I think it is very well run,” he adds. “I'm not really an ideologue. I just have a good skill set for the city council.”