Indian-American announces run for Milwaukee County Executive

Purnima Nath addressing a press conference announcing her run for Milwaukee County Executive Nov. 19, 2019. (Photo: courtesy Purnima Nath)

Purnima Nath, an Indian-American with corporate and non-profit experience, announced her run for the office of Milwaukee County Executive Nov. 19, at a well attended press conference.

Identifying her priorities as “Public safety & wellbeing;Economic development; Fiscal responsibility,” Nath said he was running for the post because she was unhappy with the lack of funds and the rising crime rate, that were becoming the reputation of Milwaukee.

“I believe in Milwaukee … Let’s move ahead >>” her poster declares.

In an interview with Desi Talk, Nath said she was born and brought up in Agarlala, Tripura, and came to the U.S. at the age of 22.

“I am committed to this country and I want to start by giving back to where I live,” Nath said,  adding that she was not deterred that this was her first foray into politics.

The primary for this race is scheduled for Feb. 18, 2020, and the final elections are on April 7, 2020. The seat came vacant when incumbent Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele announced in October he would not be running again. Already, several others are vying for the seat including State Senator Chris Larson, Glendale Mayor Bryan Kennedy, Milwaukee County Supervisor Theo Lipscomb, State Rep. David Crowley, and Peggy Whitman, an employee in the County Clerk’s office, according to a report.

She conceded the race was going to be “very contentious” but  contended it was not only experience or how much one raised for the campaign that determine victory.

Nath got her MBA from Northwestern University and has spent years in management and strategy consulting helping organizations and corporations grow and become more efficient, her press release says.

“This is pretty much a Democratic state. I am a conservative. My values are conservative,” Nath said, though the race is a non-partisan one.

Media and supporters of Purnima Nath, candidate for Milwaukee County Executive, Nov. 19, 2019, where she announced her candidacy. (Photo: courtesy Purnima Nath)

“My selling point is simple. This position requires someone with a business background with an understanding of services, product, impact, and how to come up with solutions,” Nath said.

“Everyone is crying for services when there is no money. People talk of the rich, butthe well-off people are already moving out of this county because property taxes are so high. We are being penalized to live here,” Nath said.

“And there’s wastage,” she said giving as an example a park with a very expensive and little used bathroom facility.

Nath launched into specific ideas and steps she had in mind on how to spend money, where to reduce funding, what bus routes to keep or do away with, what kind and how many buses to purchase, among others.

Currently, Nath has a few volunteers helping her gather the 2,000 to 4,000 signatures needed to qualify as a candidate by Jan. 7, 2020.

Prior to her press conference, Nath put out a press release where she described the system as “broken” and leaders in “divided” and neighborhoods facing challenges with not everyone experiencing the same opportunities in life.

“I know, what it means to have barely anything. I know what it means to push oneself. Growing up, we had a pair of shoes, two pair of clothes, handed-down worn-out books, and we read in candle lights. I am not a career politician. I bring in real life struggles, small accomplishments and a great deal of hope!” Nath said in her mailer.

Nath started a non-profit dedicated to building U.S.-India relationships, that she said has helped local businesses grow and create jobs. She also started IndiaFest, a popular local ethnic festival.




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