By Susan Caba
completed her first year as Mayor of Clayton in April with a reflection
on the previous 12 months, but a focus on the next five years.
One of her
accomplishments as the City's first female mayor is the creation
of Vision 2013, Building a Bright Future, a long-term plan for
the City's centennial anniversary. The top three priorities are:
Becoming a regional leader as a "green" city, enhancing
Clayton's position as a business center, and developing a public-private
foundation to pay for civic goals. Towards those ends, the City
approved Tax-Increment Financing for Carondelet Village, and became
one of the Missouri's first cities to adopt an LEED certification
was unopposed in her bid for mayor, after serving for eight years
as a city alderwoman. Her "day job" is general manager
of CI Select Flooring Solutions, a commercial flooring contractor.
She is also a board member of the Central Institute for the Deaf
and the St. Louis Club. The St. Louis Business Journal named her
as one of the regions most influential people in 2008.
is an environmental activist, continuing a process begun by former
Mayor Ben Uchitelle, who signed the U.S. Mayors' climate protection
agreement. Clayton has already implemented nine of the 12 Kyoto
Protocol targets for reducing global warming pollution. And Goldstein,
in her role at CI Select Flooring, worked with the Saint Louis
Symphony Orchestra to recycle the carpeting at Powell Hall. The
$325,000 project will recycle 3,000 square yards of carpeting
into usable products.
what is your inspiration or motivation?
just very self-motivated. I set my own goals and I focus on achieving
them. I'm a good multi-tasker. I got involved in politics because
I believe in giving back to where I live."
the most efficient or productive time of day for you?
a very big balancing act. I really work at being very focused
and efficient, focused on my Clayton work when that's appropriate,
and focused on my job when that's what I'm doing. I really try
to separate the two lives entirely. I get up early to work out
every morning, at 5 a.m. It clears my mind, helps with being focused
and making the big decisions. I have a lot of night meetings and
that's much more about gathering information and listening to
got great balance right now. I'm still on a couple of not-for-profit
boards, I'm able to be the mayor, and I really do love my job
at CI Select Flooring. It's been very helpful to bring that business
experience to work as mayor of Clayton. I have roundtable breakfast
meetings with community leaders from business, as well as, from
educational institutions. I ask them what we can do differently
to help their business."
the most creative aspect of your work?
very pleased we have a roadmap. For Vision Clayton 2013, we had
several sessions of a retreat with the Board of Aldermen and the
city managers. We wanted to give a framework for our goals in
three areas: Maintaining Clayton's regional leadership, strengthening
our partnerships, and balancing commercial and residential needs.
We took those three areas and brainstormed what our goals should
be and how to frame them.
goals are somewhat broad, because we have to react to what's going
on in the moment. Right now, there is so much development going
on, that has gone to the forefront. A year from now it might be
focusing on parks or developing green space. It's very much a
collaborative process. Early on in my political career, I realized
the importance of hearing from all the stakeholders earlystaff,
elected officials and citizens.
of the conversations in the last year focused on the Highway 40
reconstruction project. We really partnered with our business
community, MetroLink and Brentwood, Maplewood and Richmond Heights
(known as Mid-Metro 4) on that, as a marketing tool to promote
our retailers and restaurants. The feedback I've gotten from businesses
here, is that it hasnÕt been too bad."
the least creative or least satisfying?
the fundraising. You have to be a certain kind of personality
to ask people for money to support yourself. It's not like asking
for a cause. I can ask for money for not-for-profit associations.
I really had to think twice about how I was ever going to raise
enough money to run for mayor. It's expensive. It's daunting.
I was unopposed but I wanted to get the word out, to have people
know who I was."
the most distracting element of your workday/workweek? How do
you manage it?
of the things I find distracting or stressful is that I get a
lot of correspondence, e-mails and voicemails. I find it worrisome
trying to respond in a timely manner. Typically, I respond within
you use devices and electronics ÑBlackberries cell phones, iPodsto
manage workflow? Are they, on balance, more often a tool or a
got Bluetooth for my cell phone. I never thought something would
be so helpful. I can be moving around and talking on the phone.
I do have a Blackberry to read emails when IÕm out and about."
some of your rules for success?
focusing on the task at hand. I work hard, whether it's in my
not-for-profit life, my public service life, my paid work life.
I try to listen to other people's point-of-view. I believe in