Candidate’s preferred pronouns
What office are you running for?
California State Senate, District 28
With which party are you running for office?
Why are you running for office?
I am running to bring progressive values and practical solutions to the challenges Riverside County communities face. While some at the top may be doing fine, too many families in this District are struggling to make ends meet. I’ll go to Sacramento to fight for them.
I’m not a career politician. I’m an outsider who puts my business experience to work on local priorities: protecting health care, championing affordable housing, developing the renewable energy economy and fixing the Salton Sea.
I’m a cop’s kid from a working-class family, educated in public schools and a state university. I understand what it means to struggle just to make ends meet. I began my career in health care as a community outreach worker for a medical and mental health clinic serving 40,000 patients annually, working my way up to become an executive there. Later, I built a senior living community from the ground up, became certified in senior care in California, and ran my own consulting firm specializing in aging issues to help seniors retire in dignity. Today, I serve as Regional Director of Southern California for an affordable housing developer that has delivered needed services to thousands of low-income individuals and families since 1984, bringing much needed affordable housing to the Coachella Valley.
My partner and I chose to make California, and specifically this District, our home because we love it. From the mountains to the desert to the wine country of Temecula, the experience of earth’s great beauty is especially exhilarating here, ever reminding me that it is my duty to serve and protect the environment and our diverse community, and to better the economy with renewable energy jobs. It would be my greatest honor to represent this District and fight to bring vital resources back here to serve our community’s needs.
What is the biggest issue facing your community and how do you propose helping?
There are so many priorities to focus on: building affordable housing and tackling the homelessness crisis, ensuring healthcare for all – including long-term care – fixing the Salton Sea- early childhood education through to higher and career education- and building the renewable energy economy, to name just a few.
But, without money, we won’t be able to fix anything. Our recently resigned Republican representative did nothing but make speeches and say no. While other Senators were fighting for their Districts and bringing resources home, the tax-payers of District 28 were left out. We pay our fair share into the system, and I will fight to ensure we get our fair share of resources from Sacramento to support our needs.
How do we fix the partisan divide in our country and start working together again?
Elect a Democratic President into the White House in 2020, and move forward with an inclusive, sustainable economy. We need policies of compassion; the politics of cruelty have normalized hate and so we must tell our story of unity, and respect.
Who is your hero?
Bella Abzug, for her fearlessness and passionate commitment to women and to the common good.
What are your hobbies?
Singing in the choir, and dancing!
What is the most recent book you read?
The Book of Gutsy Women by Hillary and Chelsea Clinton
Do you have any kids/pets/talking houseplants?
Our little dog Roo – the light of our life – was tragically taken by coyotes this month. It’s been a heart-breaking loss for my partner and me. We are both animal lovers and champions of animal causes.
How can our readers get involved in your campaign?
This is a true grassroots campaign and we’d welcome volunteers to join our phonebanking, postcarding and canvassing efforts. To learn more, please email Field Coordinator Francisco at email@example.com. And, of course, we always need donations to help us get the word out, with mailers, yard signs, ads, and additional field efforts.
What question do you wish we’d asked, and what is your answer?
Why am I the best candidate to win this?
This is an extremely short and intense campaign to the Primary – considerably shorter than a typical campaign, of course, where candidates have more time to meet with voters to listen and understand their diverse needs across this enormous district.
Because I did that less than a year ago, inspiring record-level voter turnout and coming in a close second to winning – closer than any other Democrat has, at just 3.1% behind an incumbent – I’m the candidate best positioned to succeed in 2020. Even though I was a first-time candidate, more than 140,000 voters supported my 2018 campaign.
I have traveled throughout the district in the past three years, to listening to the people and learning their region-specific priorities. It takes time to do that- no other candidate has had the time to do this.
I haven’t stopped working since then and I’m fighting to finish what we started by winning in March. Many of my 2018 campaign team members are still with me and we have 250+ volunteers engaged throughout the entire District. I have the grassroots support to win, along with key endorsements of the California Democratic Party, the Riverside Democratic Party, Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis, State Treasurer Fiona Ma, Dolores Huerta, and State Senators Leyva, Allen, and Jackson, and City Council Members all through the municipalities that make up our district.
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Post created from answers submitted by candidate to our Meet the Candidate survey.
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