Aswar Rahman is a first-generation American from a Bangladeshi military family, raised by a single mother. Rahman attended Longfellow Elementary in South Minneapolis, Sheridan in Northeast, Southwest High School, and graduated from the University of Minnesota at the age of 19.
Upon graduation, Aswar embarked on a series of independent film productions. In 2016, he secured a Minnesota State Arts Board grant for his latest feature, Soirée. His interest in User Experience Design peaked with his abilities as a freelance web designer.
Aswar also worked in the Office of Mayor Rybak in his third term, specifically on youth policy and college awareness. A keen observer, he studied the inner workings of City Hall, learning the relationships between different powers, and the nuances that can make or break an administration.

Source: Aswar for Mayor Facebook ‘About’ page

“Rahman said he would commit to diversifying the Minneapolis Police Department while adding 20 officers a year. He pointed to department statistics that show a gradual rise in violent crime that began before Hodges’ tenure… “If we can’t see a correlation between that and understaffing the police department chronically over the past few years, I must be missing something big,” he said.
Source: Southwest Journal, 1/6/17

“Restaff the police, diversify the police and make sure the police have insurance.”
Source: Minneapolis Mayor Forum, 3/8/17

Rahman said he supports a $15 minimum wage, but instead of achieving that goal through passage of a city ordinance, he would prefer to invite business owners to develop their own plans for reaching $15 an hour by 2022. Business owners who signed-up for his “On Track to $15” plan would “receive recognition from the mayor’s office, which hopefully will drive up their socially conscious customer base.””
Source: Southwest Journal, 1/6/17

“The idea of people in Minneapolis being paid fairly for their work is not what I disagree with. What I disagree with is that we’re doing the same experiment over and over again … It’s hard to just force this in and expect everything will be fine. Here’s what will happen if we just unilaterally decide as a city, the floor wage will be double what the state level is basically. Here’s what will happen. Every single business owner on this side of France Ave. will move to that side. Every single small business owner like my mother, will have incredible difficulty hiring help.”
Source: Minneapolis Mayor Forum, 3/8/17

Rahman says making rent affordable in Minneapolis starts with getting a handle on the budget, especially property taxes….”That’s how housing is getting so expensive. That’s the core of the problem,” Rahman said. “And I really wish that’s what we’d focus on. Because saying that we’re going to build more and more, that’s only going to drive up gentrification faster and faster. That is not the solution.”
Source: MPR, 3/9/17

“Did you know that within the city of Minneapolis, some of the worst landlords, ones with the worst complaints against them, are also Tier One, preferred, in that they don’t get inspected for eight whole years. We’re living in a city where that’s a reality and the reason is one property assessor goes in and decides that. … To me that reeks of borderline corruption. My job as mayor, we’re going to make sure that anyone who makes a claim…they’re talking to me directly. Because that’s a problem.”
Source: Minneapolis Mayor Forum, 3/8/17

When the federal government retaliates… we should expect retaliation in the only way they can retaliate, which is financial. … that is when we have to make sure that we are in a strong enough position to ride out the storm. And we’re not in that positon now. We need to get our finances in order as a city and we need to stop making useless vanity and infrastructure investments. We need to make sure we are ready for when that fight comes.
Source: Mayoral Forum, 4/13/17

Rahman is an immigrant Bangladeshi-American.
Source: Who is Aswar?

“Saying we’re going to build more and more and more, that’s only going to drive up gentrification up faster. That’s not the solution.”
Source: Minneapolis Mayor Forum, 3/8/17

When Rahman attempted to start his own business, he was blindsided by all the fees that came along. Having seen how already-prosperous businesses tend to get the most tax breaks and assistance, Rahman said he wants to provide business owners of color with the same resources so they too can flourish.
Source: TCDP, 3/6/17

Rahman is the founder of (name of film studio) and Eloquent Design, a web development firm.
Source: City Pages, 1/27/17

Raised by a single mother, he promised he’d invest funds into providing childcare for every low-income Minneapolis family, especially for single-parent households.
Source: MinnPost 9/29/17