For my last blog of the day, I wanted to address some final comments about myself and the San Diego Institute for Policy Research (SDI).

SDI is a non-partisan organization that formulates and promotes high quality economic, policy, and public-opinion research to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of local governments in San Diego County and to improve the quality of life enjoyed by the region’s citizens. SDI was founded and financed by Steve Francis, who was chairman of AMN Healthcare, and is our sole financier. We work in our own separate office. For more information about the Institute, I encourage you to visit our website or check out the San Diego Union-Tribune article about it

SDI is based on the model of the Manhattan Institute, a New York City think tank that lent substantial advice to Rudolph Giuliani when he was mayor. A primary effort of SDI has been to find and suggest business solutions for the city of San Diego’s ongoing budget problems. SDI has focused on free-market, pro-business research for a myriad of topics, from the region’s economic stability to citizen perception of government performance. Like dozens of free-market think tanks throughout the country, SDI generally has a conservative perspective with most of its research, and is independent of political parties and candidates.

It has been a very exciting first year to be involved in SDI’s efforts, and working with fellow members Erik Bruvold and Vince Vasquez has been an exhilarating and rewarding association. I look forward to the upcoming year with so many things on the line for the San Diego community.

As an observer and yes- ardent supporter of San Diego, I want to see this region continue to prosper and be the great place where I want to live. Having seen the significant things the visitor industry does and means for San Diego, I want to speak up for what the industry does and raise awareness for the industry’s efforts.

Of course, the visitor industry is not a cure-all for San Diego’s economic fortunes, but it is an essential and as previously stated under-appreciated asset for the region. San Diego has developed a well-diversified economy that gives the region many strengths that allows it to prosper under difficult circumstances. The visitor industry should be given due credit helping to strengthen the economy and provide opportunities for a great many citizens.

— KELLY CUNNINGHAM

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