Interview with Nabila Mansoor for Sugar Land City Council
We continue our interviews with inspirational women for Women's History Month. Today our interview is with Nabila Mansoor, who is running for City Council District 2 in Sugar Land, Texas.
Tune in to hear about Nabila's policy platform and the latest political news happening at the Texas Legislature.
Learn more about Nabila’s campaign here.
Shortened transcript of the interview
Why did you decide to run?
I get that question a lot and I have to be honest, if you had asked me three years ago if I would be running for city council, or for any election, I would have probably said that there is no way. I am someone that is committed to working for marginalized communities and making sure they have political power. I work behind the scenes. I don't put myself out there, but I think something special happened this past November. I was very active on a lot of those campaigns and after that, I really thought there is an opportunity here to bringing diverse perspectives, new thoughts, new leadership, and I have the skills and experience to make that happen.
Do you feel like South Asian voices are not represented in the Sugar Land City Council?
My motto is “Putting Sugar Land residents first.” I never really identified myself as a candidate that's aligned with one community, but I do understand it's important to have a community that is representative of the folks that live there. And let me tell you, Sugar Land is the most diverse county, not only in Texas but the entire nation. We just have not seen folks that that look like me, or have my background being represented on the city council.
What do you think are the major issues that the people in Sugar Land are facing and how, if you become elected, do you intend on fixing them?
I spent most of December reaching out to the residents that live in District 2 and really just Sugar Land in general. And what I heard was the top things on their mind were: Safety, safety, safety. I am committed to finding solutions to that. I hope to do that by making sure that we strengthen our relationship with the Sugar Land PD and we look into some kind of equipment that will allow us to surveil folks that are coming into the city.
We want to make sure that we have green spaces. We want to make sure that our roads are better. Our pavement and our sidewalks are better. And we want to make sure that we keep bringing high skilled jobs into the city.
Do you know how many people you're running against? And is the Sugar Land city council nonpartisan or is it Republican/Democrat?
So the way city council works is they are a nonpartisan base. So you don't put a “D” or an “R” beside your name. They are two-year terms and for a maximum of eight years. We're looking at a three-person race. I believe I'm the front runner and I believe I'm the front runner, not because like I always look at myself as an underdog, but others have told me that I'm the front-liner on the local papers.
I know I'm the best candidate for the job. I also think there's a hunger that comes when you get that underdog mentality, right? I'm going to keep that hunger. I don't want to become complacent. We're working hard. We're trying to get to every single person in Sugar Land. We know that when we get in front of voters I can get their vote.
I can promise you and the entire audience of your wonderful podcast that no one is going to work harder than I am. And I think that also comes with being a woman of color. I also wear hijab. I understand that I have to work 10 times harder than both of my opponents combined in order to have a chance of winning at this and I think that's where that extra work ethic comes from.
Why else should people vote for you?
Look, we are at a moment of change and we want to take Sugar Land forward. Why do we have to go with the same old, same old? We need new ideas. We need new folks. That's what makes our city so wonderful. That's what makes our place such a great place to raise families. I have a background that is steeped in nonprofit advocacy, grassroots work, and I'm going to bring that same energy into the Sugar Land city council.