Friday, January 05, 2001

Introduction from 2001

Understanding begins with a true awareness:

I'm Mark Rauterkus, son of a retired teacher from the Pittsburgh Public Schools, Leo M. Rauterkus. But, be assured from the get-go, this campaign is not about me. Sure, we need to post a candidate's bio. A face-lift to the site is past due, and it is on the way. But there is more, much more to share. The bulk of what follows isn't centered upon me. Being a South Side, internet advocate, with a German sir-name (the first letter of my name matches my party's ticket) matters little.

In the future Pittsburgh, in my more ideal Pittsburgh, we'll better concentrate upon what is being said and less upon who that person is when it is said. But now, sadly, a time for an introduction and some personal grounding is in order.

I'm a citizen. I'm a Pittsburgher. I'm with time on my hands, a chip on my shoulder, and thick skin. I've got two sons and a great, brilliant wife. I'm white, 41, and a big-brother to four sisters. A cousin party in our clan can hit 100 people, average age is 5 -- but my math and spelling skills are suspect.

I'm entering this Mayor's Race because I'm not happy with what we got nor with the options unfolding in the future. Our potential is so much better than our existing execution allows.

Many other Pittsburghers can fill these shoes. The Mayor Candidate role isn't intimidating and many others can do just as well, if not way better. We all need to shoulder the load and take the roles that need to be filled. If you want this spot, please step forward.

I'm not here to fight for you. I'm here to fight for ourselves. This is our town. This is our battle. This is our future. We want certain things and expect certain behaviors, and frankly, they are not happening to our satisfaction. Let's work to make ourselves and our outlooks and our spaces much better.

A call to this endeavor exists to a smaller degree than the call to community. I'm fortunate at this juncture to be one of the few who are more insulated than most. I'm a stay-at-home dad. I've got no assets to protect. I'm not a business owner with a payroll to cover. Ours, now, is a mission to grow equity, not protect equity. I can enter the fray in the Mayor's race, expecting some attacks. Vengefull attacks will come in vain, unless they are targeted at ideas, the platform, and things such as the budget proposals we'll be making Then, we all win when those public-policy attacks are considered and delivered.

Teacher's kid, professor's spouse, boys' father, and former swim coach are roles that now blend with candidate.

think again

Coach's Lesson:

Sports are games of space, time and relationship.

I think like a coach. I've been a coach most of my life. Coaching and sports make a connection to who I am and to others in the community. Pittsburgh calls itself a sports town. To understand my nature and roots, witness my thoughts about sports.

I hope to govern like I coach. I consider myself a great coach. Inspring perhaps. I can manage people. I'll take folks out of their comfort zones, and we'll improve greatly.

After athletes understand the true meaning of sports, and all the details of the four components of the definition, then great focus and inner strengths can be found and mastered. The purpose blooms. Efforts are justified.

Yes, Leroy Hodge, I am not in this to "win." I told him that the other day and that just could not be understood. I'm in this campaign to do the best I can do. I'm going to try my best, and then hold my head up. It isn't if you win or not -- rather it is how you play the game. I say sportsmanship matters. Leroy says he is a coach and he is in this campaign to win.

Yep, I'm a little soft on the "fire-in-the-bellie" routine. However, I'm quite hot when you look at my soul. The fire isn't in my bellie -- it is in my soul.

Candidate's Lesson:is about space, time and relationship.

Life and sport are similar, except life is not a game. The elements of space, time and relationship matter.

Politics is part of life. Politcs has its own flow with its own space, time and sets of relationships. The talk of politics and sports is often similar. For example, the USA Swimming Core Objectives are:

  • Build the Base
  • Promote the Sport
  • Achieve Competitive Success
A political party would do well to hold the same values dear. The promotion goes to the public policy ideals.

Holistic outlooks, global views, big-picture ponderings and just plain-old "getting it" is to be expected from our politicians and our civic leaders.


Life isn't fair. However, there is one place where we need to insist upon fairness, justness, freedom and due process -- and that is with the actions of our government. We need moment to moment justice in Pittsburgh. That is where my campaign is going to focus for the next few weeks. Watch for the next chapters in the book, Compelling Sense.


Is it really possible to live our lives, moment to moment, as if life were a work of art? In sport, it is not only possible, we are called to it.

A calling to politics tugs now.

Standing in relationship to a task in space and time we must be present, radically aware and in the flow. Standing in relationship to others we must be prepared to give fully of ourselves with gratitude, respect and appreciation. Standing in relationship to ourselves we must be willing to know, accept and express ourselves in all of our varied capacities. And, in doing so, we stand in relation to the Divine, at an intersection of two flows, and become capable of creating art and cultivating soul in everything we do.

The dance continues. The process evolves.


Kevin DeForrest, coach, athlete and author of The Treasure Within, provided some of the above quotes. In prior years, various insights and skills were developed by publishing titles (such as the swimmers' logbook by DeForrest), crafting ideas, and managing the content and its delivery. A spectrum of education and interactions with diverse people is understood, respected and perhaps, even mastered, with our team at We'll be able to craft and deliver our message. Our vision and platform will take shape and get out. The people of Pittsburgh and throughout the region are going to come to understand and consider the issues and the personalities associated with our political landscape and the Mayor's Race, 2001.

My political legacy has not been established, yet, to the degree of tenure of others. Existing bureaucrats and incumbants are sure to have an edge in experience in terms of red-tape wranglings. Life experiences are another matter.

The entry into our public policy realm needs to be open. This race is made possibile by rights afforded to all citizens. Furthermore, the scope and depth of the issues at hand for our community are welcomed discussions in this campaign. Standing steadfast as a clear communicator and an artful, principled, empowering leader is our nature and duty.

Around Town

We hope to see you around town. More so, we need to get together on-line and at some political gatherings in the very near future. Find out what's happening by bookmarking our web page. Jump in and contribute. There is a place for everyone here, guaranteed.

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