01 Jul How 28-year-old Brooke Pinto became D.C.’s youngest-ever council member
Below is an abridged version of the article that appeared in The Washington Post. For the full article, visit https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/brooke-pinto-dc-council/2020/06/29/c97493a6-b0cc-11ea-8f56-63f38c990077_story.html
The Washington Post | By Fenit Nirappil | June 30, 2020
Four months ago, Brooke Pinto was a virtually unknown candidate for the D.C. Council who had never voted in the District.
Now she is the city’s youngest-ever lawmaker, filling the Ward 2 seat held by Democrat Jack Evans since before Pinto was born.
The 28-year-old Connecticut native came to Washington in 2014 to attend Georgetown Law, drawn by the school’s proximity to Congress and the Supreme Court. But she wound up setting her eyes on local politics.
A late entry in the race to succeed Evans — who resigned in January as his colleagues were about to expel him for ethics violations — she defeated a slew of competitors, buoyed by intense voter outreach and key endorsements.
Her opponents have questioned her qualifications and attacked her for using family wealth to bankroll her campaign. But Pinto says she has the energy and knowledge of neighborhood politics to foster trust among residents stung by Evans’s missteps and frustrated by systemic racism in the District and elsewhere.
“We must rebuild our institutions,” Pinto (D) said during her swearing-in speech Saturday. “We must reshape our service providers, and we must once again renew our promise of equity before the law.”
She faces high expectations as a successor to Evans, a self-described fiscal conservative and stalwart supporter of business interests who represented Georgetown, Foggy Bottom, downtown and Logan and Dupont Circles for nearly 30 years.
Her agenda includes assisting small businesses struggling to recover from the coronavirus pandemic and advocating for alternatives to traditional policing for low-level offenses and violence prevention.
With social distancing requirements limiting her ability to travel within the ward, Pinto says she is launching her council career by employing the strategy that was at the core of her campaign: Working the phones.