Inki Kim Welch is running for Division 5 of the Rincon Del Diablo Municipal Water District. She is running against incumbent Diana Towne.
Her issues include: affordable safe, efficient and reliable water delivery, transparency and thoughtful planning for future generations.
Welch has lived in San Diego since the fall of 1976. She attended Point Loma Nazarene University and majored in economics, accounting and business administration. She graduated in 1980 and went to work for Security Pacific Finance Corp. In 1983 she earned her MBA in financial management. When her company wanted to transfer her to New York City she went into business for herself in 1993; opening a real estate brokerage that focused on buying and selling businesses.
She went from loaning money to Fortune 500 companies to helping consumers get business loans. “I did consumer lending that no one else wanted to touch, like qualifying energy efficient loans and carved out my own niche,” she recalls.
The last 24 years she has done property management for the elderly, as a service, and for people who have a hard time with English.
She had children late in life so slowed down her fast-paced life to concentrate on raising them. “With kids come education,” she says. So she served on the Escondido Charter High School, Heritage K-8 Charter School and American Heritage Education Foundation boards, and was board president on all three. She also served on the executive board of the House of Pacific Relations International in Balboa and is president of the House of US, which is part of that same organization.
For the last four years she worked as an FAA test proctor for a flight school. She screened the pilots to make sure they had funding and monitored them to make sure they were in compliance.
“I have been living in the district for thirty-four years,” she said. “Every year water rates go up without stopping. This year COVID-19 hit and I was laid off. That’s when I looked at my water bill for the first time. I wondered if I can find out what causes the water rate to go up.”
She would use her financial background to look at financial statements to find out the direct costs and work to improve water quality. “I thought if I can save my expenditures, I can apply that same principle to public funds,” she said.
She knows that in running against a director who has been on the board 24 years that she may be David facing Goliath. “I’m not a politician,” she said. “I’m a rate payer. That’s the whole thing. I want to find out why the rate is going up. If there are some non-essential expenses, maybe I can convince other board members to vote no on rate increases. My goal if elected, is to at least keep the water rates where they are for four years. That’s my goal. Maybe I’m the only person voting on that. The public record will show what I’m voting for.”
She added, “I’m running for selfish reasons because I don’t want to pay high water rates.
Maybe I will find out there’s nothing I can do. I’m old fashioned. I could mass mail, but I’m going to pound the pavement and go door to door.” She has gone to 900 homes and says 98% of those she has met with have told her “Hey, I’m voting for you!”
Welch concluded, “As a public servant I believe in listening to people, so by listening I learn how to help others. They have given me a couple of ideas. I’m applying what I’ve learned in the businesses, to see if I can serve people and help others in the process. And help my kids and grandkids, maybe make things better for them, as well. My goal is to help and serve others.”