Her Ambition To Learn, Campbell Says, Recommends Her Candidacy

Questioning whether “Needles is getting its fair share of allocations from all sources, including the feds,” Ellen Campbell said that if she is elected to the city council in the upcoming election, she will undertake to address whether the city can tap into revenue streams that would be of benefit to both municipal operations and the city’s residents and businesses.
“I have the ambition to learn more about or research how Needles can maximize deserved benefits from the county, state and federal governments,” she said.
It is for that reason and because “I want to serve my community” that she is competing in this year’s election,” Campbell said. “I am a people person.”
In this year’s Needles City Council race, elected incumbent Tona Belt, appointed incumbent Louise Evans, along with challengers Jamie McCorkle, Kirsten Merritt, Ruth Musser-Lopez and Campbell are competing for three council positions on the six-member city council, which is augmented with the city’s mayor.
She is qualified to hold the position of city councilwoman, Campbell said, in that “I’m smart. I am articulate. I’m a critical thinker and a fast learner. I’m a good listener, but more than that, I hear. I seek solutions.”
Campbell noted, “I care about Needles, and its future. I’ve belonged to and have been president of the Soroptimist International, the Benevolent Protectors Of Does, The American Cancer Society, St. Ann Women’s Council, and I have served as vice president of the Federated Women’s Club of Needles. I am an Elk wife, a Rotarian wife, an Eagle wife, and worked on projects with the Lions Club and the Optimist Club throughout my years. I volunteered for reading programs in the elementary school, participated in the Young Entrepreneurs Mentoring Partnership project for many years in the middle school, was an extra driver transporting the junior volleyball players and the second string cheerleaders to out-of-town games. I volunteered at the Colorado River Regional Youth Shelter when it was open. All of my years of service, my willingness, compiled with the level of integrity needed in my profession will help me serve my community to the best of my ability.”
Campbell was in no way critical of her opponents in this year’s race. Asked what distinguishes her from them, she said, “Each of us running for council has our own unique qualifications. Combined, whoever wins, we will do great things.”
The major issues facing the city, Campbell said, include “maintaining good relationships with law-enforcement and the fire department. The infrastructure of our city is in a critical state. We desperately need another water well. We need to step up our game with tourism, and put in more housing. This will attract new business. With the targeted population in the general area, we can have a grocery store.”
Coming to terms with those issues, Campbell said, “is a process, not an event. With the benefit of new revenue streams, the economic improvement is available to start the process. Also we need to understand that that money is not the only answer. We must spend to make money.”
Campbell continued, “The water leaks have to be repaired and pipes replaced in order to pave the roads. New infrastructure will have to be added in some places to build. Having a higher population would provide a grocery store, and giving our city a facelift will give us the chance to increase the population and potentially bring in new businesses, which will then in turn attract more tourism. It’s a chicken or the egg situation.”
In looking at how the city will be able to pay for working toward meeting its challenges, Campbell noted, “The city has a $25 million operating budget, and that money is allocated. The new money coming in from the grow houses [i.e., marijuana cultivation operations] is going to provide a substantial infusion of funding. The city just increased water/sewer rates by four dollars a month while decreasing electric over $18 a month. Bedroom tax income will go up with the new hotel coming in. The COVID virus definitely made an impact on our small town with the absence of our regular tourism volume.”
In terms of previous experience relating to government she possesses, Campbell pointed out that she previously worked for the San Bernardino County Department of Mental Health. Beyond that, she said, “I think enthusiasm and energy result in on-the job-experience. Intelligent questioning and individual research leads one to answers. I am an exceptionally well informed member of my community, state and country. I read several newspapers every day.”
Campbell has lived in Needles for 36 years. She attended for a time the all girls Marymount High School on the Palos Verdes Peninsula and graduated from Rolling Hills High School in Rolling Hills Estates. “My high school was rated number five in the nation at the time,” she said. “My six biological children graduated from Needles High School, and I was a hands-on mom the entire time. I feel like I graduated from Needles High School.” She attended Mohave Community College in Bullhead City, Arizona, where she majored in sociology with an emphasis on chemical dependency, and further concentrated on art and music.
She is currently an administrative legal assistant/paralegal with a firm engaged in criminal defense. She has 23 years previous experience as a paralegal involved in personal injury and family law cases. Prior to that she worked as a public mental health worker.
According to Campbell, “I am married to the most incredible man that walks this earth. We have had six children, and enough private foster children to make your head spin. We have six biological grandchildren and nine total, and six great grandchildren.”
Campbell said, “We chose to live in Needles. We weren’t born into it and we didn’t break down here. We were one of the families who came here and started a new business, in 1984. There were lots and lots of fun years and activities in Needles.”
Campbell added, “I’ve been of service to my community my entire life here. I feel like I grew up here. I love Needles and I am loved by many in Needles. It’s amazing to live in a town that has one heartbeat, a town with residents who genuinely care about one another. This is a town that steps up to the plate even when you weren’t asked to. This is where I will retire and have my babies and their babies come home for the holidays. And they do. I probably have 300 children that call me mom here in our town. It’s been said “It takes a village.” Needles is that village. Needles is my village. And I will continue to serve my community come what may.”

Leave a Reply