Tristan Rader Bids to Promote Public Priorities in the U.S. House

Tristan Rader, a Lakewood city councilman, filed petitions today to run for U.S. Congress.

“In my day job, we empower people to become more independent from big corporate utilities, using solar power that they own,” says Rader. “That’s the kind of public service we need from elected leaders also—taking on the big special interests so that working people have more power.”

Rader, 34, has helped households and communities throughout Ohio develop energy independence, in his work for nonprofit Solar United Neighbors. He is also in his fifth year representing all of Lakewood as an at-large city council member.

In local government Rader has been hands-on, responding to residents on small issues and big issues, alike. Rader says that he is proud of accomplishments including improved public-records access, and a new city park which residents had sought for years. But affordability has been and remains a major theme, he says.

“We want our community to be welcoming and inclusive, and that’s only possible if it’s affordable. I have championed an affordable housing strategy to help seniors and working families stay here. We have kept the city’s budget balanced while investing in infrastructure, and even reduced a scheduled increase in water rates.”

“Cost of living has to be a priority at other levels of government, too,” says Rader.

Lakewood 2022 Comprehensive Budget

Today, we began the formal public process of vetting and passing the City of Lakewood’s
$164.1 million budget for 2022. This is a structurally balanced budget, as required by law. And the schedule for the hearings is below. You can attend in person at City Hall or follow along online. Your comments are welcome.

For a little more context, the process of budgeting for 2022 was set in motion in July when kicked off our Council Budget Priorities process. These priorities, many directly from the community, are folded into the Comprehensive Budget document.

You can find the most current updates, schedules, agendas, and live & recorded video of the hearings on the cities website.

Reelection thank-yous

First, thank you to all who made our campaign for re-election possible, let alone successful. And of course thank you Lakewood for the honor and opportunity to continue my service. Congratulations Sarah Kepple and Tom Bullock on your successful re-elections as well! And to everyone who ran on Tuesday’s council race—Laura Rodriguez-Carbone, Kyle Baker and Mark A. Schneider—thank you for running and making democracy work here in Lakewood!

There are more people to thank than I can in one post, but I’ll try to name a few. Thank you to Donna Kolis, my treasurer, friend and confidant! Thank you Eric Deamer and David for the hours of work in the field, countless phone calls and doors knocked. Matt Kuhns, your words and designs animated this effort as they have from the very beginning 4 years ago. And of course Mike Skindell for saving the day on too many days to count.

Sarah Badgett and Dr. Matthew Badgett, just always answering the call and doing whatever needed to be done. Emily Christescu, Deb Sweeney, Jean McKay and Bonnie Sikes for being there from the very beginning and always getting the job done.

Ahmie Polak Yeung, Joy BrightStar, Dean Dilzell, Kevin Young—the number of voters you were able to reach and talk to boosted this campaign to unbeatable status!

Mayor George, Sen. Sherrod Brown, Nina Turner, Council Pres. Dan O’Malley, Councilman Jason Shachner, Laura Rodríguez Carbone and other civic leaders who backed me without hesitation.

Michael Berler, Charles Milsaps, Marc Dann, Ronald Frederick, and so many others who gave their time and money to make this all work. Thank you all!!

There are many others, thank you to all I didn’t mention. This was a real team effort.

Rader Proposes Fire Dept. Offer CPR Classes to Residents

LAKEWOOD, OH: On Monday, Lakewood City Council passed a resolution with the council’s budget priorities. This included an initiative by Councilmember Tristan Rader to re-institute the city’s CPR training course which would be open to all residents.

In the proposal, Rader said “CPR has been proven to save lives. When CPR is provided within the first few minutes of a person going into cardiac arrest, that person’s chance of survival increases by two to three times. Because so many cardiac arrests occur outside the hospital, it is vital that community leaders and everyone else know how to perform chest compressions.”

This training would be conducted periodically throughout the year for residents who would like to learn life-saving skills such as CPR. Training would be conducted by Lakewood Fire Department. Costs to the city to run the program would be minimal and would include additional training for instructors, program materials, promotion, and administration costs. Training would be provided at no cost to residents.

Rader has been working with the Fire Department and Mayor’s team to ensure the program is up and running in early 2022. Please, check the cities website at that time for details on how to sign up for the training.

Primary Election Results!

I want to thank each of the voters, volunteers, and others who helped our campaign to tonight’s first-place finish in a lively eight-candidate primary. No one can do this alone. I am very grateful for this vote of confidence, going into the November election for three at-large seats.

I have never taken our community’s trust for granted, and will continue full-speed with the work of reaching out, talking with voters, and finding ways to help make our city better.

Our campaign will host a fundraiser September 29, at Around the Corner, and I look forward to seeing old and new friends. Let’s celebrate our strong primary result, and prepare for a spirited general election campaign!

Endorsed by Sen. Sherrod Brown

Lakewood, Ohio: U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown has endorsed Tristan Rader for Lakewood City Council, praising him as “a leader who will continue to fight for affordable housing, public safety, and a cleaner environment in Lakewood.”

“Tristan understands that the Dignity of Work is not just a slogan, it’s how we govern,” said Brown, “that’s why I’m proud to endorse Tristan Rader for his re-election to Lakewood City Council.”

Rader says that Senator Brown’s support is a moving validation of his work on council, as he completes with a large field in the approaching September 14 primary.

“Sherrod Brown has earned and kept Ohio’s trust, to a unique degree, by advocating progressive policy which people care about and understand,” says Rader. “That’s a standard I want to measure up to.”

Brown’s announcement arrived the same week as that of the Northshore AFL-CIO. On July 14, delegates of the prominent labor union endorsed Rader for a second term on Lakewood City Council, in a unanimous vote.

Councilmember Rader Introduces Resolution Supporting Medicare for All Act

LAKEWOOD, OHIO: Today, Councilmember At-large Tristan Rader submitted a resolution for docketing supporting the Medicare for All Act of 2021. This crucial act would ensure that every person in the United States, regardless of age or ability to pay, would have comprehensive, universal health insurance, with no out-of-pocket expenses.

COVID-19 pandemic has led to record levels of unemployment, loss of employer-sponsored health insurance, a severely strained health care system, widespread illness, and taken a profound toll on our community’s mental health, all of which is placing significant demands on our already strained health care system. The aftermath is that even more than ever people are saddled with crippling dept.

According to the New York Times 1 in 4, or 79 million Americans currently struggle with medical debt, this includes 32% of all workers. With medical debt topping $81 billion dollars in 2018, it is no wonder that 62% of people filing for bankruptcy cite medical bills as a reason.

Medicare for All Act of 2021 would provide national health insurance for every person in the United States for all necessary medical care including prescription drugs; hospital, surgical and outpatient services; primary and preventive care; emergency services; reproductive care; dental and vision care; and long-term care with no co-pay and will allow everyone to keep their doctor.

Let’s keep going—running for reelection

We have made some great progress over the last few years. So far, together we have accomplished many things.

  • Ended breed-specific legislation
  • Committed the city to 100% renewable energy!
  • Reformed our public-records policy
  • Establish Bernice Pyke Park, protecting green space
  • Added 650kW of solar to city buildings
  • Implemented an affordable housing strategy
  • Formed the Lakewood Tree Board

The list goes on but our work is not finished yet. I couldn’t be more proud to be your representative and your voice and would be honored to continue to serve Lakewood as I have.

So, I’m asking for your help in my re-election campaign. Give what you can. And join me as we continue to move Lakewood forward.

Thank you for your time and consideration,


An Inclusive Approach To Safety, Development, Recycling

I pledged to work toward a better Lakewood, for all, three years ago.

Issues of inclusion and equity are very much part of that. Active work to end racial disparities has been important to me for years.

Racism and racial disparities are real crises. This is why public health experts, who warn of the need to deal cautiously with COVID-19, have also been supportive of Black Lives Matter protests. Social equity and public health are inseparable issues.

Being proactive is the best approach to both. On June 15 I recommended review of Lakewood’s policing policies and several reforms, along with my at-large city council colleagues. These reforms reliably improve safety for communities, and for officers of departments which implement them. They can be an excellent beginning toward a safer and more just Lakewood for all.

I am grateful for Mayor George’s commitment to involve her entire administration in support of solutions. There’s much more to do, with public safety policies and with broader efforts for a welcoming, inclusive community.

Lakewood City Council Unanimously Passed Resolution Supporting Climate Change Plan

July 15th, 2019 – I’m very pleased to announce that tonight Lakewood City Council unanimously passed Resolution 9082-19 which supports two congressional bills: The New Green Deal (HR109) & The Cardon Fee and Dividend (HR763) as well as the BlueGreen Alliance. In addition, we committed to working towards zero-emission energy for our City’s use:

Re: Resolution to support Climate Change plans

Dear Colleagues,

We write to request your consideration of the attached resolution that would express the City of Lakewood’s support for three related and mutually-supportive plans to address climate change, a problem that is growing in urgency and which already affects Lakewood in the form of severe storms, higher lake levels, higher temperatures, and changing weather patterns.

At the request of a number of Lakewood residents, we specifically invite your support for the Bluegreen Alliance’s Solidarity for Climate Action plan; for the Green New Deal resolution (H.R. 109); and for the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R. 763).

Two of these climate change plans would set priorities and provide a broad policy framework to guide federal, state, and local action, while the third would implement a central strategy (cap-and-dividend) to address climate change. (Summaries of each are included below.) Many additional steps must follow to put these policies in action and attain the goal of mitigating the worst effects of climate change.

Of course, our City cannot act alone to effectively address climate change, which is global in scale. This is why it is especially important that we call upon our state and federal partners to work on this issue in a focused manner.

But we must do our part, and happily, the City of Lakewood has been working for years to improve our energy use, transportation system, storm water management, and many other areas. To name of few, these include: sidewalk repair, increasing bicycling, increasing our urban forest canopy, weatherizing homes and commercial buildings, converting street lights to LED, sourcing clean power for city operations, installing and encouraging solar, adding electrical cogeneration to our wastewater treatment plant, expanding recycling, and keeping Ohio’s densest community a vibrant destination of choice.

Our Community Vision articulates support for sustainability throughout, and the City’s Resiliency Task Force will soon report its analysis on how our City and community can further improve—and prepare for climate change disruptions.

Let’s continue our leadership, which is badly needed in a divisive chapter of American society in which scientific problems have been politicized such that many leaders shirk their responsibilities on climate. Our state and our country need to hear our community’s voice: they need to hear that we are engaging this problem with foresight and responsibility.


Tom Bullock & Tristan Rader – Members of Lakewood City Council