My name is Jeremy Olson and I’m running for a seat on the Bellevue Council, representing Ward 1. My wife, Genise, and I lived in the South Side but we were starting to look for a neighborhood to start our family. She discovered Bellevue by taking piano lessons from a resident and one evening in 2016, she came home with a for sale listing down the street from her teacher. We both worked in the city so the proximity was a huge selling point but the quaint community was exactly what we wanted. A stroll down Lincoln Avenue sold us. We could see the potential for a vibrant, up-and-coming community. A short time later, we were closing on our house, and in 2017 we welcomed our daughter. In the short time since we moved in, we’ve seen dramatic changes in our community. We’re excited to call Bellevue home and to see how the community develops in the years to come.
Getting Involved in Politics
Prior to becoming a father, I would describe myself as a casual voter and political observer. I voted every 4 years in the presidential elections but never paid much attention to local races. As a new father, I started to pay more attention to the community around me and began to think about opportunities to get involved. The 2018 midterms really inspired me - the stories of everyday people getting involved with their communities made me realize that politics isn’t a super secret society of insiders. It’s about people who want to get involved to make their community a better place. In early March 2020, I started to have discussions with members of our YMCA board around ways to get involved with the community. Days later, Covid-19 hit and everything changed. Sadly, our local Y is gone but the rest of our community is still trying to understand what life will be like after the pandemic. I'm now running for Bellevue Council, representing Ward 1, because I want to help lead our neighborhood into the "new norm" as a stronger, vibrant, and thriving community.
Why I’m Running for Bellevue Council
As your Councilperson, I will look for new opportunities to promote our community to our Pittsburgh neighbors in order to raise awareness of Bellevue's appeal and local businesses. I also want to beautify and improve the walkability of our community. You may have seen me walking down your street with a garbage bag, cleaning up the sidewalks. I want to build a coalition of residents and volunteers who will commit to improving the curb appeal of our neighborhood. Cleaner streets attract foot traffic for our businesses and raise the appeal for prospective homebuyers and renters.
As a father, I am deeply committed to increasing the availability of and access to youth activities in our community. I will explore opportunities for new or expanded youth programs and seek to secure funding for such programs. Our youth are the future of our community and we need to invest in their growth and development.
I have worked in IT at PPG for my entire career. I will look for opportunities to leverage my technical abilities, 10+ years of project management experience, and multicultural leadership background to tackle the issues and challenges facing our community with a highly structured, accountable and transparent approach. I also want to bring my experience to help improve our resident’s access to and knowledge of digital resources such as our bill payment systems - how often have we heard about billing issues due to delays with the USPS? We can help our neighbors avoid those concerns.
Most importantly, I will represent all Bellevue residents and advocate for underrepresented communities. Black Lives Matter. Women’s Rights = Human Rights. No Human is Illegal. Science is Real. Disabilities are Respected. Love is Love. Kindness is Everything. You will find a sign with these phrases on my front lawn. However, they aren’t just phrases. They are my core beliefs. I know that we are better as a community when we look at the challenges ahead of us as something we can tackle together.