DMO of the Month John Sharp, Council Member from Kansas City
Makes it Easier to Eat One's Vegetables
John Sharp is working to make Kansas City, Missouri a supportive city for urban farms, community gardens and back yard gardeners alike.
Sharp has amended the city zoning code to allow for urban farms with structures and livestock, and has created a system whereby home gardeners and community garden participants may apply for a special use to allow the donation or sale of whole, uncut produce from their abundance.
Cities around the country are facing this challenge as urban gardening becomes an appealing option for putting otherwise vacant lots to productive use, encouraging entrepreneurship, and addressing climate change.
Urban gardeners, spurred to start growing their own food often have become frustrated when city and state laws prevent them from legally sell their excess produce to their neighbors or at nearby farmers markets.
John Sharp tackled this challenge by working cooperatively with Kansas City's urban farming community, city planners and others to create a workable revision to the city code.
John Sharp serves in the 6th District seat on the City of Kansas City, Mo., City Council, which covers south Kansas City. He has been appointed to the Housing, Legislative, Plans and Zoning, and Public Safety and Neighborhoods Committees of the City Council.
Sharp previously served five terms in the Missouri House of Representatives, representing the Ruskin/Hickman Mills area, and two terms on the City Council from the 6th District. He was elected twice to the Hickman Mills Board of Education.
Sharp has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Kansas with a double major in political science and journalism and a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City with an emphasis in urban administration.
John is Program Director and a Board Member of the Multiracial Family Circle and a former Board Member of the Ruskin Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation, the Urban League of Greater Kansas City and the Hickman Mills Educational Foundation. He is a Founding Sponsor of the Martin Luther King Jr., National Memorial Foundation. He is active in a host of civic and community organizations and is a member of Community Christian Church.
Democratic Municipal Officials is proud to honor John Sharp as our DMO of the Month.