California Greens win fourteen seats in 2015 elections

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Led by the re-election of Fairfax Town Councilmember Renee Goddard, eleven California Greens were elected in November 3 elections, including all eight incumbents; while in San Francisco - the state's fourth largest city - Green candidate Francisco Herrera finished second for Mayor

The election of eleven Greens in November out of fourteen candidates, combined with three victories in spring elections, make 14 victories out of 17 candidacies in 2015; bringing to 72, the number of California Greens holding elected office statewide.

A local sustainability and cycling activist, Goddard re-joins fellow Green John Reed on the five-member Fairfax Town Council, where Greens have had a presence since 1999, when Lew Tremaine was elected to Town Council. Following Tremaine's re-election in 2003 and the concurrent election of Larry Bragman, at least two Greens have been on the Fairfax Town Council ever since. Between 2009 and 2013, with the elections of Goddard, Ryan O'Neal and Pam Hartwell-Herrero, Greens made up a majority of either three or of four members out of five -- the latter, the largest Green majority on any legislative body in the U.S. ever.

On November 3, five Greens were also elected to school boards, growing to 26 the number currently in office statewide, along with three more on community college boards. This upward trend in Greens winning education seats has been marked by Greens defending equity and opportunity in the face of the state's underfunding of education, and promoting sustainability in campus/district operations and infrastructure. On November 3 all three Green school board incumbents were re-elected, including James Clay Carver and Jacob Coan on the five member South Bay Union School District in Eureka (Humboldt County). They were joined by former Green Party of the United States Co-chair Marnie Glickman, who was elected to the Dixie School District School Board in Marin County.
 
In San Francisco, Herrera and his People's Campaign finished second against powerful incumbent Ed Lee, who was backed by developer interests that are gentifying away San Francisco's economic and culture diversity. Herrera ran on a platform of affordable housing, people-oriented safe neighborhoods, a stronger Muni (public transit), public health and public eduation, permanent status for immigrants, living wage jobs and workers right to organize.
 
Herrera was part of a three candidate cooperation that sought to use ranked-choice voting to unseat Lee, by agreeing to rank each other 1-2-3, with the hope was that whomever of the three received support from the other two candidates could surpass Lee. Herrera received 25,743 first place rankings (14.69%), the most among the three candidates; and ultimately finished second with 49,273 votes (31.61%) after picking up transfers of votes from supporters of other candidates who finished behind him. While not defeating Lee, the challengers held the sitting Mayor to a remarkably low 56.78% in first rankings, in spite of all challengers being relative unknowns, and running grassroots and underfunded campaigns.
 
Four other Greens were elected to Fire, Resort Improvement and Community Services Districts in Humboldt, Mendocino and Sonoma counties, including incumbent Jan Bramlett, Director, Manila Community Services District (Humboldt County). In many of California's unincorporated rural communities areas, these districts govern local water, sewer, security and fire decisions, and by virtue, local land use and development. 
 
Combined with earlier results in the spring, California Greens won thirteen out of sixteen races they contested in 2015. This follows winning 34 out of 58 local races in 2014 (in even-numbered years, more races are on the ballot in California.)  Demonstrating that Greens think globally and run locally, since the Green Party of California was founded in 1990Greens have won 344 out of 727 races for municipal, school, college, county and special district offices -- a winning percentage of 47.3%.
 
A full list of Greens elected in 2015 follows below:

Fall 2015

Renee Goddard, Town Council, Fairfax (Marin County) (incumbent)
two candidates for two seats ELECTED

James Clay Carver, Governing Board Member, South Bay Union School District, Eureka (Humboldt County) incumbent
two candidates for two seats  ELECTED

Jacob Coan, Governing Board Member, South Bay Union School District, Eureka (Humboldt County) incumbent
two candidates for two seats  ELECTED

Sean Frame, Governing Board Member, Placerville Union School District, Placerville (El Dorado County) incumbent
two candidates for two seats  ELECTED

Marnie Glickman, Governing Board Member, Dixie School District (Marin County) (endorsed by the Green Party of Marin County)
2nd/4 for two seats1838 votes, 28.19%  ELECTED
 
Avito Miranda, Governing Board Member, Trustee Area #1, Shoreline Unified School Distirct (Marin and Sonoma Counties) 
 
Deborah Rogers, Director, Bennett Valley Fire Protection District, Santa Rosa (Sonoma County)
three candidates for three seats  ELECTED
 
Chris Skyhawk, Director, Albion/Little River Fire Protection District 3 (Mendocino County) (incumbent)
one candidate for one seat  ELECTED
 
Jan Bramlett, Director, Manila Community Services District (Humboldt County) (incumbent) (endorsed by the Green Party of Humboldt County)
3rd/6 candidates for three seats • 98 votes, 22.02%  ELECTED
 
Nanette Corley, Director, Resort Improvement District #1, Whitehorn (Humboldt County) incumbent
2nd/4 candidates for three seats • 88 votes, 25.07%  ELECTED
 
Valery Larson, Director, Camp Meeker Recreation & Park District (Sonoma County) incumbent
1st/2 candidates for one seat • 82 votes 74.5% ELECTED
 
Spring 2015

Vahe Peroomian, Governing Boardmember, Glendala Community College, Glendale (Los Angeles County)
2nd/3 for two seats 8,100 votes, 32.9%  ELECTED  (April 7)

Gabriel Sanchez, Student Trustee, Board of Trustees, Napa Valley College, Napa (Napa County) - election April 29-30
1st/2 for one seat  55% ELECTED 
 
Michael Brennan, Board of Directors, Uptown Planners Planning GroupBankers Hill/Park West, Middletown, Mission Hills, Hillcrest, and University Heights neighborhoods, San Diego (San Diego County)  ELECTED
County: