About Billy Menz
I believe that public parks are one of the best things that our society has created.  Parks bring people together and provide a public space for people of all ages and cultures to interact with each other in positive and interesting ways.  They allow all people equal access to green space and this is especially important in an urban environment where the experience with nature is often limited.  I would like to build on the valuable legacy that MPLS public parks have in bringing people together and broaden that message to other communities.  I'd like to spearhead community outreach programs and encourage collaboration with community partners to enhance youth activities, diversify education, and address racial and ethnic equity in order to truly make a park system for all of us.
 
I am not a native Minneapolitan but have quickly come to love and adore our incredible city.  My partner and I are dedicated to raise our family in Minneapolis and invest in our community.  When we moved here in 2009 for Sarah’s medical residency, we were unsure how long life would keep us here.  Now, we see ourselves here long-term after spending some time in Texas, Oregon and Philadelphia.  Minneapolis, specifically NE Minneapolis, is the home we have been searching for and the welcoming nature of Northeasters and the creative energy of our district are the best Minneapolis has to offer.  I am ready to work for our parks, for NE/SE Minneapolis and for the citizens of our great city.
 
Working as a teacher and volunteer, my whole life has been dedicated to serving those who utilize and appreciate public services.  Working with the homeless as an AmeriCorps VISTA in Austin, Texas taught me the value of service, the importance of community, and the strength of individuals.  Throughout my teaching career, I have always worked to ensure equal access to all the gifts education has to offer students of color, students from different cultures and students who don’t speak English.  I believe that I can and do learn as much from my students and their families as they learn from me.  I am running for the Minneapolis Park Board because I want all people in our community to feel welcome, valued and respected in our world-class parks. I look forward to learning from you along the way.
    
Currently...
  • Minneapolis Public Schools Elementary Math and ESL Teacher
  • MFT 59 Union Steward and Bargaining Team Member
  • NE Titans Hockey Team Manager
  • Bottineau Park 10U Baseball Coach
  • Windom Park 11U Soccer Coach
  • Green Team Leader at Lyndale Elementary School
  • Member of Rename Ramsey Campaign
  • Leader of Boys on Bike Program
  • GEMS and GISE, Lego Robotics Coach
  • Candidate for Minneapolis Park Board

Formerly...
  • Founder of street newspaper, The Austin Homeless Advocate
  • President, Street Roots Board of Directors
  • Teacher Leader of Judicial Committee
  • Service Day Coordinator for school in Portland, OR
  • Leader of McCall School Green Team, Philadelphia
  • Americorps VISTA Volunteer