Name: David A. Winkler
Office: Charleston City Council, District 1 (special election)
1. Why are you running?
I have always been very civic minded, volunteering my time on the Board of various community organizations. Now that I am retired from my practice as a CPA, serving as a City Councilmember represents an opportunity for me to utilize my skills and professional experience as a civic leader for our community.
2. What do you expect to accomplish if elected?
We have a great city, that has a diverse and growing population. It is my goal to continue building on what has been accomplished so that our City remains vibrant and relative for its residents, and the tourists that visit.
3. What distinguishes your candidacy?
As a CPA, I helped many small business owners with business solutions tailored to their specific and unique needs. My approach was to offer practical guidance based on sound business principles and ethics. I also led a diverse team of almost 50 members in identifying and pursuing a common goal.
4. Describe how the impact of climate change in the Charleston area would affect your work if elected.
Flooding from king tides, rainstorms and storm surge cause emotional and economic hardship. I will listen to field specific experts as we address the impact of flooding on our City and base my decisions on the best avenue to proceed based on practical application.
5. Pick an issue you believe has not been adequately addressed by local government. Describe solutions you will pursue if elected.
Growth has put a strain on our infrastructure. I will work closely with the business community, developers and governmental agencies to manage the growth so our community remains strong and vibrant.
6. Pick one urgent issue currently facing the office you are seeking (different from questions 4 and 5) and describe how you would address it.
I will work closely with our public safety professionals to ensure that the City is providing the financial and staffing resources for them to maintain a safe environment for all our citizens.
7. Do you pledge to work with other council members to move forward collaboratively and to reduce partisanized bickering? How will you accomplish this?
When I first started my CPA practice, I thought I was bulletproof and had all the answers. As I matured, I realized I didn’t even know all the questions. As a result, I learned to listen. Each councilmember, and every citizen has ideas and passions that are important to them. I will listen, question, seek answers, and render my best decision based upon what I have learned.
8. Please give a 150-word summary of your background.
I spent a 40-year career as a CPA working with small business owners in the pursuit of their dreams. Along the way, together with the support of many, our firm grew to almost 50 team members. Our success was the result of a singular focus on our mission statement – to proactively impact the well-being of those we serve. We utilized our understanding of sound business principles to reach consensus for the solutions that would drive success and fulfillment. We valued the input from our diverse team members and were rewarded in our efforts by being named a best places to work. We gave back to our community both financially, and through a commitment of time from all levels of team members. I specifically benefited from working with the Boys and Girls Club, Family Counseling Service, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center, and many others. My work and life experiences will guide me as a Councilmember, and my faith will be my moral compass.