Erin Young announces run for Summit County commissioner
SILVERTHORNE — Erin Young believes the key to governing is being flexible, adaptable and communicative.
The 34-year-old Silverthorne business owner announced her intention to run for Summit County commissioner in a news release May 24. Young is running as an unaffiliated candidate for the District 3 seat, which includes Silverthorne and northern Summit County. Commissioner Karn Stiegelmeier, who currently represents District 3, is term limited.
As an unaffiliated candidate, Young will not be on the June 30 primary election ballot. Instead, she has to receive enough petition signatures to be on the ballot for the general election in November. If she gets enough signatures, she will be up against former Silverthorne Mayor Bruce Butler, who is running as an independent, and Democrat Josh Blanchard.
Young said she’s unaffiliated because she wants to be a voice for all people, regardless of party.
“It doesn’t matter if you voted for me,” she said. “If I get elected, I still need to represent you.”
Young has lived in Summit County for nearly her whole life. After graduating from Summit High School, she went to the University of Colorado Denver to study political science. She later went on to receive a master’s in public administration from CU Denver. Now, she owns Red Buffalo Coffee & Tea in Silverthorne. Previously, Young served two terms for the Summit County Board of Education.
She plans to use her knowledge from growing up in the community to guide her decision making as commissioner.
“I’m from Summit,” she said. “I get the weird complex relationships that we have from ranching, to Denver Water board history, to history with Vail Resorts and the community and north-end, south-end dynamics.”
Democrats Thomas Davidson, District 2, and Karn Stiegelmeier, District 3, are term limited.
District 1: Breckenridge
District 2: Dillon and Frisco
District 3: Silverthorne
Young said she does not have an agenda as commissioner. If elected, she plans to listen to other’s ideas, be flexible and rise to meet challenges as they come up.
“I don’t have my soapbox to stand on,” she said. “We have so many things going on, and COVID has only proved to us that we can’t predict everything that is happening.”
Although she is running on a “non-agenda,” Young said preserving the environment and creating a more livable community are important issues to her.
“We need to focus on how we can make this a place where young families can continue to thrive,” she said. “The rungs on the ladder to get to financial stability are very wide.”
However, she said, combating the novel coronavirus pandemic should be a priority right now.
“It’s hard to think about the quality of the river when the quality of your house and life are at risk,” she said.
In Young’s opinion, the current commissioners are doing the best they can to respond to the novel coronavirus pandemic. If elected she plans to focus on improving communication in regards to the pandemic, especially for the non-English speaking community.
“One thing on the board of education, if I had one person say, ‘I didn’t know you were making that decision’ … then I know I didn’t communicate well,” she said.
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