Last week California Women Lead welcomed the newest class of future candidates. If Not You, Then Who? is California Women Lead’s premier campaign training that gives women the skills and tools needed to win a successful political election. Classes are limited to a select group of women that are dedicated to running for office in the near future.
Ms. Borucki has an extensive background in developing solutions to issues involving California political, legislative and executive branch policies and processes. Borucki has a wide-range of experience in recommending and implementing organizational/business process changes in infrastructure including water, energy, transportation, housing, asset management, building standards, telecom, planning, finance and research. She has an extensive background working with state, federal and local political leaders to implement significant legislative, and regulatory changes. Ms. Borucki is the former director of the California State Lottery, chairwoman of the California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board, director of the California Department of Motor Vehicles, Chief Deputy director of the California Transportation Commission, and was a team leader for the California Performance Review. Ms. Borucki served for over 20 years at the California Department of Transportation managing programs including: planning; budgets; new technology and legislative outreach. She was responsible for executing the first federal revenue anticipation notes (Garvees) for transportation in California. While at the California Lottery, Ms. Borucki, cut through the red tape and managed the construction of a GOLD/LEED standard building using an Integrated Project Design process, helping to reinvigorate a neglected business area of Sacramento. Borucki has a Master of City and Regional Planning, and a BA in Urban Planning & Political Science from Rutgers University. Joan works with large and small companies providing business development advice and guidance for penetrating senior leadership in specific agencies, major programs and local governments. Why I am running:
I have vast experience in many areas of public service and believe that I could use my talents and experiences to help better my local community. I am very concerned about the waning influence of women in elective office. I believe we have a voice that needs to be heard regardless of political affiliation. I am only interested in local level positions. I would like to stay connected to the community. I have particular interests in infrastructure and education. I am a very strong supporter of equal rights for everyone especially our LGBT community. I do start this process with some worry for the impact that becoming a public figure will have on my family and personal life. I look forward to being able to serve my community.
Charlotte Danielsson-Chang has a Juris Doctorate degree from Stanford Law School and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Political Science from UC Berkeley where she graduated with Honors in the Major and Distinction in General Scholarship. She has been practicing immigration law for the past fifteen years. Ms. Danielsson-Chang was recently re-elected to the board of the Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce in San Francisco/Silicon Valley and previously served on the board for three years from 2009-2011. She is also a member of the board of the Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association, an organization dedicated to the empowerment of API Americans through voter education and leadership development. She is a member of the Swedish-American Bar Association and the American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Why I am running:
I am considering running for office to have a greater impact on my community. My strength is that I have the ability to thoroughly understand and analyze proposed legislation and to take into consideration the varied implications of legislation for different groups impacted. I would like to learn more about the process and mechanics of running for office, including how to raise funds and how to develop a campaign strategy.
Pippin Dew is a successful business woman and involved community member. She serves as Chairman of the Board for the Vallejo Chamber of Commerce, a Director of the Board for the Solano Association of Realtors and on the Board for the Vallejo Education Business Alliance, as well as the Steering Committee for the Vallejo Participatory Budget Project, which was the first city-wide Participatory Budget Project in the nation. Her greatest accomplishment, however, is being a mother to her 8 year old-daughter, Jessica. She is a sports enthusiast and coaches her daughter’s soccer team.
Why I am running:
I am currently seeking a seat on the Vallejo City Council. I am running for office because I have lived in the area for 25 years and I know the potential of our beautiful city. I have observed repeated attempts to realize this potential only to see it hit obstacle after obstacle. The City has emerged from bankruptcy, housing prices are increasing, and the economy is improving. I believe the environment is ripe for the opportunity to help this city flourish. I can be an agent of change and a part of Vallejo’s transformation. Some of the qualities I bring to the table are an interest in strong, stable economic development and job growth, the ability to listen to diverse opinions and build consensus, and a constant drive to move progress forward.
Alcira E. Dominguez
Alcira E. Dominguez was born in Mexico and lived in Redondo Beach, California, for over 30 years where she served as city commissioner. Her career experience includes grant management, community relations and policy advocacy. She had a successful 11-year tenure at Beach Cities Health District and continues to enjoy a close relationship with that organization. Alcira is currently living in midtown, Sacramento, where she is consulting for the Public Health Institute and Office of Health Equity. Alcira has a passion for public service, learning and expanding her capacity to effect change. She has completed several trainings such as Leadership Development in Interethnic Relations, Women’s Policy Institute, Hispanas Organized for Political Equality and more. Alcira holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from CSULB.
Why I am running:
I am interested in running for office because I have an intrinsic sense of justice. I want to do my part in making life a little better for those around me. Public policy is the instrument with which we can improve the quality of life for others and though legislation we have the opportunity to affect change for the greatest number of people in our state. Women, and specially women of color, are underrepresented in public office. I would consider it both a right and a privilege, depending on how you look at it, to someday run for office.
Gwendolyn D. McClain
Gwendolyn D. McClain, a Northern California native, was educated at Sacramento City College, San Francisco State University and California State University, Sacramento. She hasover 20 years of experience in marketing, communications, community engagement and government affairs. Ms. McClain has developed, implemented and directed the MarCom efforts oforganizations in the for-profit, non-profit, government andeducation arenas in Northern California, St. Thomas, United States Virgin Islands and Memphis, Tennessee. She has led successful start-up efforts and served in key roles within variousMarCom Departments over the span of her career. With a keen sense of building start-ups and collaborative opportunities coupled with her innovative and data-driven decision-making,Ms. McClain started J. Haynes Enterprises. J. Haynes Enterprises is a strategic MarCom consulting firm located in the East Bay. She is an avid community volunteer and in her spare time enjoys golfing, swimming, live theater, concerts and movie theater screenings.
Why I am running:
My desire to run for office is a product of my upbringing by my mother. She instilled in me the idea that people are created equal, must be treated with respect and deserve the very best this life has to offer. She also was clear that dedication to achieving success required focused effort, the key word being “effort”. As I grew up, I had (and still have) a basic need to see all people reach their potential and fulfill their individual goals. Although objectives and goals may conflict between and amongst various groups at times, I believe it is a fundamental right for each unique human being born on Earth to be able to freely dream and, if they choose to do so, actually put in the work required to make those dreams a reality. After working for a mayor in Shelby County, Tennessee, for three years, I more clearly came to understand how decisions made by elected
officials can impact every aspect of a citizen’s life.
Michelle Smira is well known for her innovative strategies and her ability to generate groundswells of political, public and media support for client objectives. Under her direction, MMS Strategies has been at the forefront of major initiatives undertaken by the hospitality and health care industries, real estate, solid waste and transportation communities. As the Principal of MMS Strategies, Michelle has specialized in media relations, coalition building and government affairs. Michelle has served as District Director to United States Congressman Doug Ose and was the spokesperson and public information officer for the City of Elk Grove, the fastest growing City in the nation. Michelle has more than fifteen years of experience working on large scale development projects and management of Fortune 500 contracts. Clients include MV Transportation, Kaiser Permanente, Granite Construction, McDonald’s Corporation, Nestle Waters, Republic Services and the Paradies Shops. Active in the community, Michelle serves on the Board of Directors for the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, Sacramento County Taxpayers League, Elk Grove Chamber PAC, Sacramento Metro PAC and WEAVE. In addition she is a member of the North State Building Industry Association, Region Builders, International Council of Shopping Centers and the Urban Land Institute. Michelle is a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Forum, Class XIV and a former member of the Sacramento City Planning Commission. An alumna of Arizona State University, Michelle currently resides in historic Land Park, Sacramento with her husband David.
Cherri Spriggs-Hernandez, partner and managing director of the firm’s Orange County office, leads the Bilingual and Multicultural Outreach practice for FSB Core Strategies. A southern California native who splits her time between Sacramento and Orange County, Cherri has spent the last 15 years of her career developing and implementing culturally appropriate strategies for her clients. Her extensive experience and sage counsel makes her the go-to choice for clients seeking to deliver their messages to the Latino community. In addition to her work within the Bilingual and Multicultural Outreach practice, Ms. Spriggs-Hernandez brings over a decade of public relations and public affairs experience in the realms of health care, transportation, insurance, tort reform, land use and patient advocacy. Serving as a long-time member of the FSB team, she has managed day-to-day efforts and multi-million dollar budgets on behalf of a number of statewide and local initiative and referendum campaigns, Fortune 500 companies, local government agencies and trade association clients. Ms. Spriggs-Hernandez possesses in-house public relations and public affairs experience, having previously served as a senior public relations specialist with VSP Vision Care in Rancho Cordova, California. While with VSP, she co-managed its national experiential marketing tour. Early in her career, Ms. Spriggs-Hernandez honed her public relations and public affairs skills in the Sacramento offices of Edelman and Goddard Claussen Porter Novelli. In 2012, Ms. Spriggs-Hernandez was awarded a California State Assembly Resolution from Assemblywoman Beth Gaines for being a notable small business owner. In 2013, she was recognized by the Roseville Chamber of Commerce as one of three finalists, the only female, for the Young Professional of the Year Award, as well as a nominee for the Sacramento Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 distinction. She also sits on the California State University, Chico Department of Journalism and Public Relations Advisory Board and is also an active member of the Junior League of Sacramento, heading up its Relationship Management Program. Additionally, Ms. Spriggs-Hernandez is a member of the Hispanic Public Relations Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the National Latina Business Women’s Association and California Women Lead. Ms. Spriggs-Hernandez earned a bachelor of arts degree in journalism/public relations from California State University, Chico. She has completed coursework toward a certificate in event and meeting planning from California State University, Sacramento, and completed graduate coursework at California State University, Fullerton in speech communications.
Why I am running:
“You won’t get a lemon if you vote for Cherri,” was my first campaign slogan. The campaign was for secretary of the Truman Benedict Elementary School Student Council, and my campaign team was comprised of my dad, mom and three pesky little brothers. I had about $75 in my campaign fund generated from babysitting money and in consultation with my advisors, we decided it’d be best used for five different colored campaign shirts for me to wear every day of the week through campaign season; paper, paint and glitter for posters; and, engraved pencils for giveaways that read “Vote for Cherri for Secretary.” After a very intense campaign fought against my next door neighbor, I ultimately conceded. I’d lost, but I didn’t quit. Throughout my junior and high school years I won some elections, and lost some elections. It was during these years that I got a taste of local government, too, when I was appointed by the San Clemente City Council to serve on the Youth Advisory Committee, which I did for six years. Wherever life took me, I knew elected office, appointed office and community involvement was in my future.
Councilwoman Angela Swanson, a 20 year resident of South Lake Tahoe was elected to the city council in November 2010. Prior to joining the council she served as a member of the Lake Tahoe Unified School District Board of Education 2005-2009. A longtime community activist, she serves on several community boards in addition to her service on the council. Her particular areas of interest on council are in natural resources, transportation, capital outlay and infrastructure issues and the needs of families and children. She brings in-depth knowledge of the capital outlay process, state finance, and regulatory agencies to her work on the Council. A graduate of the University of California Berkeley, with a degree in political science, Ms. Swanson is presently working towards a master’s degree in Public Administration with a finance emphasis. She operates a private consulting practice serving school districts through California in need of facility planning services. Her expertise is in guiding local agencies through the agency regulatory and approvals processed required to access state bond dollars. She works in conjunction with agencies, the design team, bond counsel and community to develop bond programs that maximize local dollars with state matching funds and the sequencing of those projects.
Why I am running:
I am an effective leader who understands the issues that will make or break our growing county in the next decade. I understand that governance is a skill and profession and have the experience to effect the changes in finance, economic development, jobs growth, the environment and social services needed to meet the public’s need. I want to lead El Dorado County to better, more effective governance in District 5 but more importantly, within the whole county. It’s time for vision to meet action.
Jann Taber has worked in media and politics for over three decades. She began her career as a broadcast journalist and has spent most of the last 20 years as a media relations expert serving a governor, Assembly Speaker, several Senate and Assembly members, as well as for statewide, state and local political campaigns. Jann is also a business owner, a motivational speaker and the author of “Moving Providence: A Formula for Creating an Extraordinary Life.” She earned a Master’s degree in Corporate and Political Public Relations and a Bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism. Jann lives in Sacramento with her 12-year-old son, Jake, the budding actor; Rebel the dog; and Roxie and Sawyer the cats.
Why I am running:
I am interested in running for political office to shake up the status quo and to help get visionary women elected to position of political power.