Council’s newest member in focus

Brunnick brings community passion to her new role

Posted 5/17/16

The Lone Tree City Council has a new look this week after it swore in two new members along with a new mayor at its May 17 meeting. One of the new representatives is District 2 member Cathie Brunnick who replaced Kim Monson, who did not stand for …

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Council’s newest member in focus

Brunnick brings community passion to her new role

Posted

The Lone Tree City Council has a new look this week after it swore in two new members along with a new mayor at its May 17 meeting. One of the new representatives is District 2 member Cathie Brunnick who replaced Kim Monson, who did not stand for reelection.

Brunnick holds a computer science degree from the University of Pacific in Stockton, California and a master’s degree in adult learning from the University of Colorado Denver. Originally, she came to Colorado to take a job with JD Edwards.

“My entire career has been in technology,” she said. “I started out with a degree in computer science and worked for JD Edwards for more than 10 years and made my way into becoming a technology executive, really, in the sales side of the business.”

Her career continued to develop in software sales and she became senior vice president of sales at Vignette where she met her husband. In 2008, they decided to leave Vignette to start their own company, Patheos.com.

“Consider it the ESPN of religion and spirituality. What we wanted to do was a nonbiased approach to news and commentary in the world of religion and spirituality,” she said. “As you know, that’s very rare. Most people are professing something or looking to help people understand one particular view.”

As Patheos grew, the company partnered with theologians from Harvard and Yale to develop content that has been picked up by several major universities across America that are using it to teach world religion courses.

“From that, we grew into doing commentary and news around each of those. We have 15 channels dedicated to each of the major world traditions.”

The website is one of the top 200 sites in America serving 10 million unique visitors every month.

“And that’s what I do in my day job,” she said.

Brunnick does not have a background in politics, but does have a history of community service and was a founding member of the Lone Tree Arts Center Guild, a group of citizens dedicated to fundraising on behalf of the arts center and community activism around local arts.

“I’ve been there since the very beginning, which was my first entrée into community service,” she said.

Her work and position as president of the Guild exposed her to the city council, giving her an appreciation for how the city operated as it grew, and sparked her desire to be involved with the creation and development as the city grows to the east.

“I convinced myself that this would be a really good time to take that community service time that I had been dedicating to the Guild and get more involved with the city council,” she said.

Brunnick describes herself as an agile learner who cares deeply about representing her constituents by understanding the complexity of ssues facing the city. She believes that her first year on the council will be a good time for her to listen and learn.

“I’m already shocked at how many things I’m still learning,” she said.

Though she is not bringing a specific agenda into the council she has what she refers to as “care-abouts,” which center on development and quality of life.

“I care about the integration of the business community alongside the residential community and creating what I think is becoming a really vibrant urban experience outside of downtown,” she said.

Additionally, she says that maintaining a balance between growth and the recreational offerings the city has is a priority.

“My guess is that once in and learning about all the many things that are going on, I’ll probably have a few more things that I’ll become passionate about,” she said.

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