Happy New Year! I’m Kookie Fitzsimmons, the new mayor of Saratoga. I’m honored that my fellow city councilmembers unanimously selected me to serve in this role. My family has called this community home for three generations, and I’m the first person who was born and raised in Saratoga to be elected to the city council and to serve as mayor.
I grew up in Saratoga and attended Sacred Heart School near city hall, where I am so often now. I learned what it means to be a team player from a young age, and I bring that perspective with me to the city council. While attending Sacred Heart, I was named Most Valuable Player on two championship volleyball teams, and I was chosen by my peers to represent the school on the first all-star softball team.
I continued to develop leadership skills during my time at Saint Francis High School, where I was editor of the school yearbook. I went on to attend UCLA and the College of Notre Dame. My strong ties to the city extend to the Saratoga Village and business community as well. For 15 years, my family and I owned and operated an antique store and flower shop in the Village.
I have always been passionate about finding opportunities to volunteer and serve this community that means so much to me. Some of my favorite memories throughout 30 years of volunteering have been serving as president of the Village Merchants Association, being chair of the Blossom Festival and of the Village Halloween Costume Walk, establishing the Saratoga Business Development Council as a charter member, working with West Valley Community Services, participating in cleanup projects on Highway 9, and being a Rotarian for 23 years. Before being elected to the city council in 2020, I also served on the city’s planning commission for over six years. Volunteering truly brings me joy, and I hope to inspire others to spend more time making a difference in our community this year.
There are several key issues I plan to focus on during my term as mayor. Given rising inflation and economic uncertainty throughout the world, it is critical for the city to remain fiscally responsible and maintain a balanced budget. We must begin conversations about how to wisely use our resources to continue providing quality services in the coming years.
Safety is another top priority of mine. I deeply appreciate Saratoga’s strong relationship with the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, and I look forward to working together this year to monitor crime trends and discuss additional ways to keep Saratoga safe.
As you have heard, I also have a big place in my heart for small businesses. I believe it is important to support them, so I look forward to exploring permanent outdoor dining options downtown, along with other ways to support local businesses.
I’m certain that together, this city council can make a difference when it comes to these subjects and more. I’m so enthusiastic about working with this dynamic group of individuals and leveraging our diverse backgrounds and experience to do our best for Saratoga. I look forward to all that is ahead, and I cannot wait to see you all around town this year!