Brian Poochigian, candidate for Visalia City Council District 3, had some good news to tell the crowd of supporters who had gathered at Avidian Properties on Main Street September 19.
The Tulare County Association of Realtors had just interviewed all three candidates for District 3 and voted to endorse Poochigian.
Though the other two candidates, Merritt Wiseman and Steve Woods, were also highly qualified, Bret Taylor, executive officer with the association, said that Poochigian’s experience with Visalia city government gave him the edge.
The Tulare County Association of Realtors is a professional trade association of more than 1000 licensed real estate agents in the Tulare County area.
Shannon Grove, former state Assembly member from Bakersfield and the likely winner in the State Senate District 16 race, was the second big endorsement announced that evening, and Poochigian said more big endorsements were coming down the pike.
Grove said she likes his politics, family, and experience. She said that when she called the leaders in the community they were all endorsing him. Grove also felt that he had the right private sector experience to be a leader in Visalia’s government.
Robyn Stearns, former mayor of Exeter, was the meet-and-greet’s bar tender. She said that Poochigian has been involved with the city of Visalia and knows all the issues.
Poochigian has lived in Visalia all of his life and is a Whitney graduate. He and his wife, Adrianne, who is a local high school teacher, have two toddlers.
“Brian always wanted to do something bigger,” Adrianne said. “And when presented with the opportunity to serve, he seizes that opportunity.”
She said whether volunteering for the city or at his day job he feels like he is working for the people. Brian knows that if he doesn’t respond to someone he will lose them so he is very accessible. As a volunteer on the Citizens Advisory Committee, or as a possible city council member, he considers the people his employer and that he works for them.
“He is a man of integrity and that is the most important thing above all else,” she said.
Poochigian has a long history of community service.
Being a member of Visalia’s Citizen’s Advisory Committee has given Poochigian exposure to all the city’s major issues. As part of the committee, he is the Co-chair of the City Annual Public Opinion Survey. He also spearheaded a Christmas toy drive benefiting pediatric patients at Kaweah Delta Hospital. Poochigian is an avid member of Trex Fraternity Sequoia Chapter service club and has held many offices, including President.
Poochgian said the issues he is focused on are homeless, public safety, and traffic congestion along Demaree and Goshen.
“We need to work on the homeless issue so it does not get worse,” he said. Poochigian suggested that the city get the faith-based communities more involved because they are ready to help.
His long term vision is fiscal accountability. A good example is his view on the suggested aquatic center. Poochogian said that the center would require about $800,000 a year just in maintenance.
“That does not make sense economically,” he said. “Would you remodel your bathroom if you couldn’t pay your gas bill?”
Overall, Poochigian has been pleased with the way Visalia has been run.
“The city is on the right path and I want to make sure it stays on the right path.”