Ali Hasan: Don Cohen’s letter inaccurate |

Ali Hasan: Don Cohen’s letter inaccurate

Ali Hasan
Eagle County, CO, Colorado

I wanted to write a response to Don Cohen’s recent letter about me, as much of his letter was fac tually inaccurate:

1. Environmental scientist: I have, indeed, earned a degree in environmental science from Occidental College. More importantly, my environmental train ing was done under Dr. James Sadd, which culmi nated in my role as a lead researcher in some of Dr. Sadd’s reports that were commissioned by the state of California. Work of my environmental reports can be found at my family’s Foundation Web site,

2. Filmmaking: I was labeled as a “student” filmmaker in Cohen’s letter. In 2006, I was commissioned by the Coca-Cola Corp. to produce a commercial, as well as being named as an emerging filmmaker by Panavision in 2007. However, my current film, “Rabia,” has won more than 20 awards on the film festival circuit. Of note, I was honored, alongside Quentin Tarantino, at last summer’s Provincetown Film Festival. A listing of my awards can be found at this site:

3. Political commentary: My career as a political commentator seemed to be wrongly dismissed, as well. The shows I have served as regular guest on include CNBC’s the “Dennis Miller Show,” “Politically Incorrect” with Bill Maher, Fox News and BBC Radio. A catalogue of some of my appearances can be seen at this Web site:

4. Land development: I was also accused of claiming a knowledge of real estate based on family holdings. For the record, I do own my own land-development company called Sangre De Cristo Capital LLC. I spent much of 2006 involved in consultations with Wells Fargo Banks and other companies over real estate projects in southern Colorado involving no other family members of mine. Everyone is welcome to check the annual reports of my company at the Colorado secretary of state web site, under the business center:

5. Teaching: I did, indeed, serve as a public school teacher in East L.A. with the word “tyro” in front of the title. The title “tyro teacher” is commonly recognized in California’s school system. A picture tour of some of my experiences teaching can be found here:

6. Residence: In the letter I was wrongly accused of living in a house that did not belong to me. I live in a home that is shared between me and my sisters, as we are designated remaindermen on the title to the property.

In summary, Cohen and I have a long history of political battling. It was in 2007 that Don Cohen was a lead champion in the movement to turn Eagle County into a home rule county. Implementing the home rule legislation in Eagle County would have removed all campaign-finance-reform laws from Eagle County elections, meaning that county commissioner candidates would have been able to accept unlimited contributions from individuals, labor unions, and corporations, without having to report any of the contributions.

With such a rule in place, I felt that our local government in Eagle County would become much less transparent, because any corporation would be able to purchase its way to control of our commissioner board, without even having to report its contributions publicly. I, along with many other good citizens, rallied against this legislation and proudly defeated it. My activism also extends to changing Eagle County school policies regarding teacher payment, as well as challenging my own Republican Party in changing their gas drilling policies.

My activism also extends to changing Eagle County school policies regarding teacher payment, as well as challenging my own Republican Party in changing its gas-drilling policies.

Overall, the activism and experience above are the things that I hope to take to the state House.

While I did not appreciate Don Cohen’s letter, I do appreciate him giv ing me the opportunity to clear the record. Thank you for reading!

Ali Hasan

Candidate, state House District 56

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