Ann Arbor City Council – Ward 2
Kathy Griswold defeated incumbent Kirk Westphal on Aug. 7, winning 50.45% of votes cast – a margin of 53 votes. She does not face opposition on the ballot in the Nov. 6 general election. Click here for full election results.
Kathy Griswold is a former trustee for the Ann Arbor Public Schools, an advocate for pedestrian safety, and a retired info tech consultant. This is her first bid for a seat on the Ann Arbor City Council. She faces incumbent Kirk Westphal in the Aug. 7 Democratic primary. Councilmembers elected this year will serve a four-year term.
On the issues section of her campaign website, Griswold cites improving roads and neighborhoods, supporting citizen priorities, accelerating neighborhood sewer and road repairs, prioritizing public safety and sustainability, and levying taxes "only when absolutely necessary and through a process that is completely transparent."
Griswold previously served in elected office as a trustee for the Ann Arbor Public Schools from 2001-2005. She lost an election to the AAPS Board of Education in June of 2001, but was appointed to the board later that year to fill a partial term caused by the resignation of Henry McQueen. In June 2002, she ran successfully for a three-year term as an AAPS trustee, a nonpartisan position.
During her tenure, she co-chaired the AAPS student achievement committee and supported building the district's newest high school, Skyline High. She also has served for over a decade on the district’s Transportation Safety Committee, starting prior to her election to school board.
Griswold did not seek re-election after her initial term but continued her involvement with AAPS, serving on the PTO Council and other groups. She is a member of A2 Safe Transport, a group that advocates for pedestrian safety improvements in Ann Arbor.
Griswold is a frequent speaker during public commentary at Ann Arbor City Council and other public meetings. Her commentary has covered a range of topics, including pedestrian safety issues and advocacy for the city to improve streetlights, especially at school crosswalks.
Griswold helped lead successful opposition campaigns against several tax proposals over the years, including the 2012 bond proposal to build a new downtown library, and a 2009 school "enhancement" millage. She served as campaign treasurer for both of those efforts.
She was also active in campaigns against a proposal to expand local transit services in 2014 and opposing a 2016 proposal to increase Ann Arbor City Council terms to 4 years. In 2017, she was campaign treasurer for a group opposing the countywide millage for public safety and mental health services. Each of those three ballot proposals were passed by voters.
Griswold has supported current Ann Arbor City Council members, including Jack Eaton (Ward 4) and Sumi Kailasapathy (Ward 1).
In other community work, Griswold is chair of the Friends of the Michigan League and serves on the League's Board of Governors. She has served on the Ann Arbor Kiwanis board and strategic planning committee.
In the 1980s Griswold worked for Unisys Corp., serving as director of information services. She also worked as a consultant – SQC Associates – focused on medical info tech systems. She holds an MBA and a master's degree in social work, both from the University of Michigan.
Griswold lives near King Elementary School on the city's east side. She is married to Joe Machak, a retired University of Michigan assistant professor who serves as her campaign treasurer. They have two grown children and have been foster parents to six other children.
Kathy Griswold: In The News
'Dark money' attacks on Ann Arbor candidates raise concerns – MLive, Aug. 5, 2018
Getting to know Ann Arbor City Council candidate Kathy Griswold – WDIV, Aug. 4, 2018
Summer of Discontent: The August 7 primary will decide the fate of Mayor Taylor and his council majority – Ann Arbor Observer, August 2018
Candidate Position Summary Regarding Police Oversight – Transforming Justice Washtenaw, July 2018
Soapbox Summer 2018 – WEMU, July 17, 2018
Ward 2 Candidate Forum (video) – Orchard Hills-Maplewood Homeowners Association, July 15, 2018
Candidate Comment (video) – Community Television Network, July 10, 2018
2nd Ward Ann Arbor council candidates differ on Library Lot, taxes – MLive, June 27, 2018
League of Women Voters Wards 2 & 3 Ann Arbor City Council Candidate Forum (video) –Community Television Network, June 26, 2018
Insufficient street lighting and crime continue to be a concern in student neighborhoods – Michigan Daily, April 4, 2018
Stop-start but safer: Study reveals results of increased crosswalk enforcement – Michigan Daily, Nov. 6, 2017
Debate over Ann Arbor's crosswalk law heating up again – MLive, Sept. 7, 2017
City Council unanimously approves pedestrian safety resolution – Michigan Daily, Feb. 21, 2017
Tragedy on Fuller Road: The death of Justin Tang and the future of pedestrian safety – Ann Arbor Observer, December 2016
Local pedestrian safety group voices concerns at Ann Arbor budget meeting – Michigan Daily, Dec. 12, 2016
Fatal crash highlights concerns over pedestrian safety funding in Ann Arbor – Michigan Daily, Oct. 27, 2016
2 groups take different sides on Ann Arbor election reform proposal – MLive, Oct. 10, 2016
Does Michigan need a statewide crosswalk law? Ann Arbor debate moves to Lansing – MLive, March 11, 2014
Ann Arbor DDA Embraces Vinyl Art Wraps – The Ann Arbor Chronicle, Oct. 5, 2013
Whose Library Is It Anyway? Why the bond failed – Ann Arbor Observer, December 2012
Ann Arbor downtown library bond proposal defeated: What now? – AnnArbor.com, Nov. 7, 2012
One for the books: Voters will decide Nov. 6 whether to build new downtown Ann Arbor library – AnnArbor.com, Oct. 25, 2012
Group forms in opposition to $65M bond proposal for new downtown Ann Arbor library – AnnArbor.com, Sept. 17, 2012
"Everything is on the table”: The schools grapple with budget cuts – Ann Arbor Observer, December 2009