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 “There’s a lot of great people running for the offices. I bring probably the deepest bench of financial experience of anyone,” Warren City Council at-large candidate Diane Young said.

“There’s a lot of great people running for the offices. I bring probably the deepest bench of financial experience of anyone,” Warren City Council at-large candidate Diane Young said.

Photo by Brian Louwers

Young: ‘I saw a lack of leadership on the City Council’

By: Brian Louwers | Warren Weekly | Published October 9, 2019

WARREN — Diane Young grew up in Romeo and moved to Warren two years ago, when she was struck by the friendliness of her neighbors.

She said she was standing in line at the grocery store when someone said, “Isn’t it a beautiful day?”

“Lovely sense of community,” Young said. “I feel very welcome here, much more than I have in other communities I’ve lived in in the past. I just want to bring my financial experience to help improve it a bit.”

A financial planner for 30 years, Young started her own firm in 2004. She said her wealth of business, financial planning and budget experience make her the most-qualified choice for an at-large seat on the Warren City Council.

“I’ve been telling residents that they’re pretty much getting a whole new City Council this year, so they should choose wisely, and they need someone on City Council with some financial experience,” Young said.

“You do have to hold the city administration accountable to its budget, and you have to know how to ask really good questions, and not just lay down and take whatever they throw at you,” she added. “A budget’s a budget for a reason, and when I attend these city meetings they’re constantly coming back up for more money.”

Young ran for a seat representing part of northern Macomb County in the Michigan House of Representatives before moving to Warren, which is closer to work for her husband, an associate dean of science at Macomb Community College.

 She also served as the treasurer for the Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan and on various other governing boards.

“I understand board governance. I think if we applied the same processes to the City Council and the administration, we might have fewer lawsuits,” Young said.

Her campaign platform includes addressing things she believes are important to Warren residents.

“I jokingly say roads, rats and real estate, and respect,” Young said. “If we don’t start taking care of our city and prioritizing our budget better, we will see further declines in our real estate values, and that’s for many people their biggest asset.”

She said a lack of respect for residents, fellow members of the council and the city’s governing process in general is what she’s seen from some current elected officials. Young is running on a campaign that champions “positive leadership.”

“I saw a lack of leadership on the City Council,” Young said. “We need a City Council and an administration that the citizens respect and the region respect.”

She added, “I don’t feel like our City Council is very nice to people. You can disagree about an issue and still be polite and civil to one another. I think Warren has great bones. I’d like to see it get better. We’re the third-largest city (in Michigan), and we need to start acting like we’re the third-largest city and be more influential in our state.”