My name is Maria Palmer, and I am seeking re-election to the Chapel Hill Town Council. Thank you for visiting my website! I will share a little about myself and my vision for our incredible town.
I have served on the Chapel Hill Town Council since 2013. I value broad participation in government and open access to all. Before being elected to Town Council, I volunteered in service and leadership roles from translating for the police department during emergencies to co-chairing a committee for Chapel Hill 2020.
I am a long time advocate and activist for social, racial and economic justice. I was honored at the Anacostia Community Museum, part of the Smithsonian Institution, for my role in broadening access to the vote in North Carolina. I was one of the first people arrested in the Moral Monday’s movement to insure access to the polls. For thirty-plus years I have worked for social justice causes among the disenfranchised and in the corridors of power. I have worked among migrant farmworkers and served on the North Carolina State Board of Education and many places in between.
I hold a doctorate in Educational Leadership from UNC Chapel Hill. I began my studies here in 1994 and moved permanently to Chapel Hill two years later. During my tenure on the Town Council I have worked with the university and the town to develop policies and collaborations of mutual benefit to us all.
I have worked diligently to support affordable housing initiatives. Working with nonprofit organizations and developers alike, Chapel Hill has set in motion the process of doubling the number of affordable housing units by 2019.
I was born in Perú and as a teenager lived in Guatemala and Mexico as well. I maintain ties with family in Peru and continue to work to build understanding between my birth country and my American home. I became a U.S. Citizen in 1987, and I have worked tirelessly for cultural understanding both in Peru and in the United States.
I am committed to serving the people of Chapel Hill and to making our community stronger than it has ever been. I greatly appreciate your vote and your support!
Defend Social, Racial and Economic Justice
Supports major investments in Chapel Hill's historically Black neighborhoods and in youth empowermentWorked with Parks & Recreation staff to ensure all children have safe and affordable recreational opportunitiesPlaintiff in NAACP v. McCrory, which successfully overturned North Carolina's discriminatory voter suppression lawSupports the construction of a Teen CenterAdvocate for WorkersVoted to make Chapel Hill a Living Wage Certified EmployerPetitioned the Council and voted to approve paid parental leave for town employeesFight for Affordable HousingSupported initiatives poised to double the number of affordable units within the next two yearsSupported the Affordable Housing Development Reserve, which will help address long waiting lists for affordable housing unitsProtect the EnvironmentCommitted to making Chapel Hill walk-able, bike-able, and pedestrian friendlyCouncil liaison to the Parks, Greenways and Recreation Advisory Board and the Transportation and Connectivity BoardSupporter of Light Rail, which would protect the environment and lead bring economic investment to Chapel HillSupports the construction of a permanent Farmer's Market
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