Mia Burse spends her days working on sophisticated defense related contracts for Lockheed Martin. The graduate of Morgan State in Baltimore spends her off time mentoring students in the Syracuse City School District, participating in Peoples AME Zion Church on South Salina Street and enjoying culture downtown with friends.
Those friends in Syracuse have changed for her since she first moved here in 2005. The others have moved away. Mia has chosen to stay. She's hopeful that Syracuse can fulfill its potential, but skeptical it will happen quickly enough for her to stay here and raise a family.
She is more engaged in the community than others of her generation. She lives in Liverpool, but is clearly invested in the city. She even questioned the three candidates for mayor in an article for Urban CNY this week. She also watched Otis Jennings, Steve Kimatian and Stephanie Miner debate on NBC 3 Monday night where she found herself uninspired by the group.
Mia Burse is looking for a mayor who can end the downward spiral for Syracuse. She said, "I want two things, being a realist and someone who is also a visionary who recognizes where we are now recognizes there's a lot ow work to be done. But, is also willing to lead us into a new direction."
Mia sees Steve Kimatian as the candidate most likely to achieve improvements in economic development in Syracuse. In her view that is the issue that comes above all others. If there is not progress with jobs and vacant storefronts Burse knows her twenty something generation will disappear from Central New York. Burse said, "I believe my generation is a fickle generation. We've had instant gratification. So if we aren't pleased with the situation we will go elsewhere."
When others ask her why she cares so much about the election of a mayor in a city where she cannot vote she explains how the center city is critical to the success of the region. Mia Burse says she is not yet giving up, but someone better act fast or else she will move back to Baltimore or somewhere else where she can lead the life she envisions.