Friday, February 23, 2024

City Council candidate Minka vanBeuzekom prepares campaign signs. She held a fundraising kickoff Tuesday at a Central Square nightclub.

A scheduling conflict prevented Cambridge Day from sending a reporter to cover the kickoff of Minka vanBeuzekom’s run for City Council. The below report was contributed by supporter Thomas Olbert:

Minka vanBeuzekom led a lively “meet and greet” Tuesday at Central Square’s Middlesex Lounge to kick off her campaign for City Council. The event brought together many committed activists and volunteers in support of her run.

Her supporters described her career as a distinguished and passionate one committed to environmental and neighborhood activism.

Resident Laura Roberts credited the candidate with introducing her to “guerilla gardening” and described her career as one characterized by “energy, enthusiasm and wisdom.”

She also said vanBeuzekom “knows the Cambridge city budget better than any current city councillor.”

Quinton Zondervan described her as a “tireless advocate for the environment, a genuine green candidate” and credited her role in the formation of the first Climate Congress, the Cambridge Climate Emergency Action Group and Green Cambridge.

The candidate gave a brief speech, citing the humble beginnings of her 30 years in Cambridge civic organizations: as a Central square resident learning the art of rat trapping from her neighbors to fight the neighborhood rodent infestation. In effectively leading civic efforts to clean up the neighborhood by changing local zoning ordinances and installing cleaner methods of trash disposal, she learned firsthand how slow and frustrating working through city hall bureaucracy can be, and how limited civic actions truly are. She described this as her “defining moment.”

She has since learned how to get things done by skillfully navigating the interdepartmental labyrinth of city hall.