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NWWNC at-large stakeholder – Amir Tarighat and Zahra Hajee

(Daily Bruin file photo)

By Editorial Board

May 16, 2019, 2:30 am

Amir Tarighat

No-nonsense leaders are hard to come by. But Amir Tarighat is the voice of reason Westwood desperately needs.

The board endorses Tarighat for at-large stakeholder in the North Westwood Neighborhood Council for his experience in event planning and handling the business logistics of such community engagement.

We shouldn’t forget Tarighat was the matter-of-fact councilmember when news broke that the NWWNC’s “Next Friday” event had floundered, wasting more than $1,000. Tarighat’s attempts to save the affair, such as establishing a complete event proposal and understanding the steps necessary to host an event with the city, prove he understands how Westwood works better than the committee that tried to roll out the event does.

Tarighat, who is currently council treasurer, doesn’t just bring hindsight about “Next Friday” to the table. His platform is to remove some of the city’s red tape, unnecessary bureaucracy that prevents businesses from coming to Westwood. He also wants to create an inviting atmosphere in Westwood Village for businesses by interfacing with them through events and programs.

But beyond this, Tarighat emphasizes a need for inclusivity on the council – between business holders, students, homeowners and renters. For example, he plans to use the NWWNC’s outreach committee to give community members a space to participate in local government without alienating one another – something that has happened all too often in the past.

For half a year, Tarighat was actively working to breathe life back into Westwood and put out fires on the NWWNC. That refreshingly firm persona should earn him another term on the council.

Zahra Hajee

After a stint studying abroad, Zahra Hajee is back in Westwood – and vying for a seat on the North Westwood Neighborhood Council.

Her ideas are encouraging. She hopes to work on pedestrian- and bike-friendly projects and to extend the undergraduate student government’s physical accessibility plans to Westwood. She also wants to improve the community’s sustainability through initiatives like introducing recycling bins to the area.

She also plans to work on establishing the council’s prominence and influence in the community and with local politicians by working proactively on issues like the Metro Purple Line Extension and the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games.

Hajee’s experience as the Undergraduate Students Association Council Facilities commissioner in the 2017-2018 term has given her the know-how to bring her sustainability and accessibility initiatives to light. And her experience as one of the founding members of NWWNC shows she knows what Westwood needs.

Though her ideas are somewhat vague, the above qualities give the board confidence she can accomplish her goals for the council next year.

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