Jennifer Vanian: Candidate for Glenwood Springs City Council Ward 3

Jennifer Vanian
Jennifer Vanian
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

I have lived in Glenwood Springs since 1977, moving here from Longmont when I was 17 and just graduated.

My father died when I was a child, so my mother introduced me to a farmer who allowed me to tag along. I grew up being close to the earth, milking cows, mowing hay and always growing a garden.

I bought a house here when I was 20 years old. It was owner financed. I was the first caller when it was announced on the Swap and Shop radio. Those breaks don’t exist for kids today.

Having a house has been the single-most important stabilizing factor in my life.

Education and background: Lifelong learner, master in resourcefulness; CMC, two years no certificate; certified horticulture, floriculture; certified Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute; worked for CMC five years, senior yoga; apprenticed as a car upholsterer.

I also started the Glenwood Community Garden with two other great women, and worked to change the law for backyard chickens in Glenwood.

My volunteer work has included search and rescue, four years; Grace Nursing Home, weekly wheelchair exercise, four years; Sustainable Settings, Carbondale Food Coop and Carbondale Economic Localization.

I read to a blind man once a week for 13 years, and volunteered for Troop 225 Cub leader, then was pack assistant and pack master four years (my son received his Eagle Scout). I raised two beautiful children as a single parent, and both have completed degrees.

I’ve been self-employed for 30 years/drywall finishes, interior and exterior painting.

My platform is based on universal composting for Glenwood Springs. The infrastructure is already in place at the landfill, and currently up and running as Aspen’s landfill compost system. The goal is to introduce a program in Glenwood to have all food scraps from restaurants, groceries and residences collected weekly and taken to the landfill.

We have the ability now to create a Class 1, Seal of Testing Assurance certified compost. This can be sold to food growers as well as all the new hemp fields starting up. It will be a huge revenue boost for the city. Aspen is currently taking 80,000 pounds of vegetable and fruit waste to compost per week.

Since I began this process I have been working with King Lloyd who runs the landfill, and Alyssa and Dave Reindel who own EverGreen ZeroWaste. King has been busy preparing the landfill to open a new compost system in accordance with the United States Compost Council Certification.

King is the new leader in reforming the landfill operations. He partook in the Northwest Colorado Waste Diversion Study and learned that 81 percent of trash was divertable, 27 percent was organics and 33 percent was recyclable.

Allysa has been running her compost hauling operation in Carbondale, Aspen and Glenwood, already making Aspen’s compost system $2 million last year.

I am a good fit for Glenwood Springs City Council, because I am a community organizer and have had my heart in the right place my entire life. I work for the betterment of people.

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