Blaizen was born in St. Cloud, Minnesota before soon moving to Hampton Roads where their father was stationed as a member of the Navy. Despite this, Blaizen has come to call Chesapeake home having been raised in northern Chesapeake in the Deep Creek borough of the City. Although they maintain a passion for education that can be seen even within their candidacy for Soil & Water Conservation Director, Blaizen’s love has always been at the intersection of environmental science and policy whilst understanding the important role education has played in fostering that passion and for preparing the next generation of leaders to tackle both current and future problems relating to conservational efforts.
As a political independent, Blaizen chooses policies based on their experiences in research along with the latest discoveries instead of political agendas that seek to push forth the ideologies of a particular group without consideration for the actual scientific background of an issue. As part of the Mitigation & Adaptation Research Institute (MARI), Blaizen had the esteemed honor of working for the Planning & Development Authority (PDA) of Grenada, a small island nation in the South Caribbean, on how the nation can establish a 50-year plan on how to prepare for future sea level rise and extreme precipitation events. Additionally, over the summer Blaizen will be working with the City of Norfolk’s Urban Forestry department on ensuring urban canopy access for all across the City whilst working with the Institute for Coastal Adaptation & Resilience (ICAR) on outreach to communities in South Norfolk to inform future planning priorities for the area.
Between their work in conservation & adaptation research and their involvement in the community, Blaizen understands that the most important aspect to consider in legislating is ensuring participatory modeling, or otherwise listening to all stakeholder interests to create goals that align with all interested parties as closely as possible. From their membership in community organizations like the South Norfolk Civic League to collaborating on community projects that earned them the President’s Volunteer Service Award, Blaizen understands personally why all voices need to be at the table for decision-making.
Youth Involvement has always been an important consideration for Blaizen, especially in conservational issues. Throughout high school, Blaizen dedicated themselves to increasing youth engagement as a Founding Fellow of Civics Unplugged, an international organization dedicated to advancing democracy through youth engagement and leadership. This blossomed quickly into their time as Co-Founder & Co-Leader of Virginia’s chapter of State of the Students, a non-profit run by and for high school students to promote engagement between youth and their governmental officials.
Currently, Blaizen is entering their senior year at Old Dominion University majoring in Ocean & Earth Science, concentrating in Environmental Science, with minors in Political Science and Sustainability & Conservation Leadership. Blaizen continues to seek ways to bolster their knowledge and experience base to ensure that they are a capable leader to continue fighting for a brighter future for all Chesapeake residents so we truly can be a City where we can all live, work, and play.