The Marin Democratic Party
is pleased to announce our endorsements for the
General Election on November 3, 2020
Congressional District 2: Jared Huffman
Assembly District 10: Marc Levine
Fairfax City Council: Bruce Ackerman / Barbara Coler / Chance Cutrano
San Anselmo City Council: Brian Colbert / Alexis Fineman
San Rafael City Council District 1: Maika Llorens Gulati
San Rafael City Council District 4: Greg Knell
San Rafael Mayor: Kate Colin
Sausalito City Council: Melissa Blaustein / Vicki Nichols /Janelle Kellman
College of Marin: Paul da Silva / Philip Kraneburg /
Stephanie O’Brien / Stuart Tanenberg
Marin Municipal Water Division 2: Mark Lubamersky
Marin Municipal Water Division 5: Larry Russell
Marin County Board of Education: Felicia Agrelius
Mill Valley School Board: Joan Hottenstein
Novato Unified School Board: Julie Jacobson
Reed Union School Board: Charles Hornbrook / Jacqueline Jaffee
San Rafael School Board District 1: Samantha Ramirez
Sausalito-Marin City School Board: Lisa Bennett
Tam Union School Board: Leslie Harlander / Tiffany McElroy
Tam Community Services District: Steven M. Levine
Measure M: YES
Measure P: YES
Measure R: YES
Congressional District 2
Assembly District 10
Fairfax City Council
Fairfax City Council
Fairfax City Council
San Rafael Mayor
San Anselmo City Council
San Anselmo City Council
San Rafael City Council Dist. 1
Maika Llorens Gulati
San Rafael City Council Dist. 4
Sausalito City Council
Sausalito City Council
Sausalito City Council
Sausalito School Board
College of Marin
Paul da Silva
College of Marin
College of Marin
College of Marin
Marin Water District – Division 2
Marin Water District – Division 5
Marin Board of Education
Mill Valley School Board
Novato Unified School Board
Reed Union School Board
Reed Union School Board
San Rafael School Board-Dist. 1
Tam Union School Board
Tam Union School Board
Tam Community Svcs Dist.
Steven M. Levine
Yes on Measure M
Yes on Measure P
Yes on Measure R
Scroll down to view information about each candidate
Bruce Ackerman – Fairfax City Council
Having lived in numerous regions of the US, our family moved to Fairfax in 1993. Educated at MIT in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, my professional work has primarily been in laboratory instrumentation, solar R&D, and epidemiological software. I co-founded a large product development consultancy in Mountain View, while caring for my aging parents and raising two children, now adults.
My involvement with Fairfax began as a member of the General Plan Advisory Committee. The connections built there led to an appointment to the Planning Commission, and in 2017 election to Council, where I am currently Vice-Mayor. I founded the Climate Action Committee and serve on the Racial Equity and Social Justice Committee, among others, and am leading the design of a Community Resilience Microgrid.
Barbara Coler – Fairfax City Council
Barbara Coler is an incumbent on the Fairfax Town Council serving the last 7 years and as Mayor in 2015 & 2019. She was appointed May 2013, elected November 2013 reelected in 2017. She is a scientist with Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in biological sciences. She serves on several Boards: Marin Clean Energy (Executive Board and Board member); Marin Wildfire Prevention Authority; Marin Telecommunications Agency (former, disbanded 6/20); Community Media Center of Marin; Countywide Community Development Block Grant; Marin County Assessment of Fair Housing; LAFCO, and several Town committees, notably Affordable Housing; Climate Action (former); Open Space; and Age Friendly.
Barbara has demonstrated her commitment to protection of public health and the environment – with 20+ years running statewide hazardous waste site cleanup/permitting for Cal/EPA and 5 years enforcing air quality regulations for the Bay Area Air District. She was Administrator of a significant climate change program for the 35 California Air Districts for several years.
Barbara is a long time resident of the west end of Fairfax and is an avid hiker and biker. She is a 24+ year Fairfax resident (with 31 years in Marin).
Chance Cutrano – Fairfax City Council
Chance Cutrano is a 27-year-old running to bring new vision, passion, and leadership to the Fairfax Town Council.
Chance holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Philosophy and Political Science from Saint Xavier University and a Masters of Public Administration in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School. He’s the Director of Programs for a 35-year-old Bay Area environmental nonprofit, the Resource Renewal Institute. He serves the Town of Fairfax and the Bay Area as the Fairfax Open Space Committee Treasurer; Fairfax Volunteer Board member; Fairfax Coronavirus Taskforce Member; Vice-Chair of the Sierra Club’s SF Bay Chapter, and other positions.
Chance is endorsed by the Marin Democratic Party, the Marin Professional Firefighters, Fairfax Mayor Renee Goddard, MMWD Director Larry Bragman, and many more.
Learn more at www.chanceforfairfax.org
Kate Colin – San Rafael Mayor
Kate Colin is San Rafael’s Vice Mayor and has been on the Council since January 2013. With the support of DCCM, she hopes to become the first female Mayor of San Rafael since the city was incorporated 147 years ago.
As a council member, Kate focuses on a variety of issues including homelessness, housing, resident engagement, sustainability, and local transportation. Recently, Kate has been deeply involved in helping our community respond to Covid-19 and address racial injustice. She is committed to working collaboratively with residents to address the current challenges we are facing.
Kate and her husband have lived in San Rafael since 1996 where they raised their two children. Kate has a MBA from Kellogg Graduate School of Management and a BA from Dartmouth College.
Brian Colbert – San Anselmo City Council
Brian Colbert is currently Vice Mayor of San Anselmo and serves on multiple county and local committees, including the Transportation Authority of Marin, and Marin Economic Recovery Task Force (a county-level group focused on post-COVID reopening and economic recovery). Brian recently spearheaded a public common space in the heart of San Anselmo leveraging county flood-control efforts. Prior to his election to Council in 2017, he was Chair of the San Anselmo Economic Development Committee.
Brian grew up in Fairfield County, CT, before attending Oberlin College and the University of Chicago. He practiced law and is currently a long-time entrepreneur. He moved to San Anselmo with his wife and daughter in 2013. His family loves to travel and enjoys the open space of Marin County.
Alexis Fineman – San Anselmo City Council
Alexis Fineman is a current councilmember in San Anselmo. As the youngest elected official in Marin, she has prioritized community resiliency and climate change mitigation since being appointed to the council in July 2019. She works closely with the Sustainability Commission, Town Staff, and the local-elected from neighboring jurisdictions to strengthen the Town’s commitment to climate action in its operations and policies. She is a member of the Community Development Block Grants Committee and the Sir Francis Drake Name Change Working Group.
Alexis grew up in the Ross Valley and attended Wesleyan University in Connecticut. She is a teacher by day, an artist, and a gardener. Prior to joining the council, she was a council chamber gadfly.
Maika Llorens Gulati – San Rafael City Council District 1
Maika Llorens Gulati has served as the first elected Hispanic school board trustee at the San Rafael Board of Education since 2015, currently as President of the Board. Passionate about education, equity and the environment, Maika is the Executive Director of Slide Ranch, a nonprofit in West Marin connecting children to nature.
Maika is a former local business owner in downtown San Rafael where she was involved with the BID and the Chamber of Commerce. She has over 20+ years of international marketing experience working with Fortune 500, midsize and entrepreneurial companies in both technology and services sectors.
Bi-cultural and bilingual, Maika is a proud mother of two children and she lives with her husband in San Rafael since 1998.
Greg Knell – San Rafael City Council District 4
Greg Knell has been a longtime leader in our community and has co-led many of the ballot measure campaigns that provide San Rafael services we all rely on, including wildfire prevention, new fire and police stations, funding for libraries, and ambulance services with no cost to patients.
As a Trustee for the San Rafael City School District since 2003, Greg has worked to provide equity for San Rafael’s diverse student population. As a union-friendly small business owner for 37 years, he has created jobs in our community. Greg is a Commissioner for RxSafe Marin, which has reduced the number of opioid prescriptions in Marin County by 40%.
If elected, Greg will continue his advocacy for safety, public health and the wellbeing of our whole community.
Melissa Blaustein – Sausalito City Council
Whether it’s protecting local services, our environment, or our economy, Melissa is focused on workable solutions that will support a healthy future. As vice-chair of the Sustainability Commission, a Rotarian, and a Chamber of Commerce Board member, Melissa is dedicated to delivering meaningful outcomes.
Melissa’s love of Sausalito started early when she was voted “class leader” at the Sausalito Nursery School. She attended Redwood High School, where she was awarded the MLK Jr. Award for the advancement of Human Rights. In the years since, her leadership has continued in roles at the Obama White House, Gavin Newsom’s office, UN Environment, UN Women, and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ campaign.
Melissa holds an MPA from Sciences Po and an undergraduate degree with honors from Berkeley.
Vicki Nichols – Sausalito City Council
Vicki has lived in Sausalito for 39 years participating in city government for the last two decades. Since 2013 she has served on the Sausalito Planning Commission where she was recently Chair. She currently serves on the Marin Conservation League and EarthShareCA boards. She graduated from the Environmental Forum of Marin and served on the board. Professionally, she worked as a Budget Analyst at Pacific Bell transferring to AT&T where she and a small team were responsible for a $435M regional budget.
Vicki’s service to Sausalito includes many hours working on important local measures for the betterment of Sausalito including as Chair for Measure S, the Public Safety Building Bond Measure (2008) and Measure D (2012) to consolidate Sausalito’s Fire Department into the Southern Marin Fire District.
Janelle Kellman – Sausalito City Council
Janelle Kellman is a community leader, team builder, and big picture thinker. Since moving to Sausalito in 2001, Janelle has provided 10 years of service on the Sausalito Planning Commission, now as Chair, and spent the last three years as a Member of the General Plan Advisory Committee and General Plan Working Group, offering direction to how Sausalito will develop over the next 25 years.
Using her background as an environmental lawyer and entrepreneur, Janelle will focus on an economic recovery that diversifies Sausalito’s tax base while supporting Sausalito’s working waterfront, diversity and equity initiatives, disaster preparedness, affordable and senior housing, and helping Sausalito become a climate change leader.
Lisa Bennett- Sausalito School Board
Lisa Bennett is a CPA and an owner of Driver’s Market, and of Sausalito Fitness. She has served on the Desegregation Advisory Group (DAG) in the Sausalito/Marin City School District and the Culture & Climate Work group in the District. She serves on the Marin City MLK Coalition, ISOJI, and holds leadership positions in many grassroots organizations: Indivisible Sausalito and SURJ (Showing Up for Racial Justice) Marin where she has co-facilitated many workshops on racism.
She is also an elected Assembly Delegate to the California Democratic Party and as a member of the Marin County Democratic Central Committee. She serves on the boards of the Multicultural Center of Marin and the Marin Chapter of the ACLU and is co-chair of ICE Out of Marin.
Paul da Silva – College of Marin
I am a retired biology professor. I have a doctorate from UC Berkeley, and for 23 years, I taught biology, environmental science, natural history and environmental landscaping at the College of Marin. At COM, I also performed administrative duties as a department chair and took classes as a student.
I have always worked to support key Democratic Party values in areas such as the environment, labor and social justice. This I have done both individually and as a member of numerous community organizations. Now, as our environmental, health, equity and economic crises give us the challenge and the opportunity of re-inventing education, I plan to use my experience to ensure that this transformation benefits students, society, and our planet.
Philip Kranenburg – College of Marin
As a four-term elected COM Trustee and past President, I would be honored to continue to serve our community in this capacity. I joined the board when it was in crisis – unable to govern itself effectively.
During my tenure, I helped enhance the board’s effectiveness through improved fiscal management, collaboration, IVC utilization, and sustainable facility modernization. Also helped establish a pension liability trust.
Stephanie O’Brien – College of Marin
Stephanie founded Dovetail Decision Consultants, Inc. in 2003 following a 20+ year career in Facilities, Furniture Planning and Sales Management, specifically to assist publicly funded environments with the crucial aspects of FF&E Planning.
She began her career at Bechtel in Los Angeles, went on to lead the systems planning team for a Herman Miller Dealership, manage the interiors team of one of the first national furniture dealerships, then to became District Manager for the industry’s largest manufacturer of educational furniture.
Her education has been in Interior Design (CSU Long Beach), Project Leadership (UC Berkeley Extension) and a wide variety of business-related leadership programs (Academy Leadership, Major Account Management, etc.).
Stephanie served as a trustee to a Marin County school district for 10 years and is now serving in her second term as a trustee to the Governing Board of the College of Marin. She represented these entities in the Marin County Joint Legislative Advisory Committee for more than 10 years and is a member of the Marin County School District Organization (SDO) Committee for MCOE.
Stuart Tanenberg – College of Marin
Stuart Tanenberg, Chief Executive Officer of Beressi Custom Manufacturing Company and former trustee of the Larkspur Corte Madera School District was appointed to the College of Marin Board of Trustees in April 1, 2014 and elected to a full term in November 2015. He serves as the Board President for 2019/2020, has chaired the Board Self Evaluation Committee, Superintendent/President Evaluation Committee, and Board Policy Committee.
Tanenberg has lived in Marin County for 46 years with his wife, Anita, and brings to the College of Marin over 40 years of experience actively involved on various local boards, commissions, committees, and organizations.
He has an MBA from Dominican University of California and a BS in Business Administration from San Jose State University.
Mark Lubamersky- Marin Municipal Water District – Division 2
Marin’s watershed is vital to us. We need to preserve it for future generations; we must guard against wildfire and ensure we have clean, safe drinking water while keeping rates as low as possible.
One of my earliest memories was my father taking me fishing at Phoenix Lake. MMWD lands are an important recreation resource. We’re fortunate those lands on which I played as a child are still open to us.
My experience on the San Rafael Park and Recreation and San Rafael Planning Commissions demonstrates my commitment to public service and insights into good governance. I’m the varsity football and Track coach at San Rafael High and a teacher. I value teamwork. I know when we work together, we can achieve great things.
Felicia Agrelius – Marin County Board of Education
Felicia Agrelius is the Director of LGBTQ+ Youth Programs at the Spahr Center and an advocate for racial and disability justice. She works in schools across Marin supporting students and working with teachers and administrators to implement best practices for LGBTQ+ cultural competency.
Felicia values educational equity, holistic support of students and staff, and financial sustainability. In the past, she has worked for a disability service agency and served on the board of the National Council on Independent Living.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality studies from Scripps College.
Joan Hottenstein – Mill Valley School Board
My name is Joan Hottenstein and I am running for the Mill Valley School Board. We have lived in MV for 20 years and have two daughters who are now in 7th and 10th grades. After serving on many PTA boards and on the Council of PTAs, I have the experience and relationships within the district that will enable me to step onto the Board and get to work immediately.
I believe in collaboration and building bridges, and am well-prepared to handle district challenges as a Trustee with the calm and confidence that come with experience.
I am honored to have the endorsement of the Marin Democratic Party and would be thrilled to have your vote.
Julie Jacobson – Novato Unified School Board
Julie Jacobson is a Novato business owner, PTA President, and the mother of two NUSD elementary students. An active volunteer in Novato schools, Julie has also served as a Lu Sutton Site Council member, Lu Sutton PTA auditor, and 16th District PTA auditor.
Julie is running for NUSD trustee because she believes the board needs a parent perspective and someone with firsthand experience in local schools. Julie understands the critical issues facing the district and has spent time talking directly with NUSD teachers, faculty, parents, and other PTA leaders about possible solutions.
Julie will prioritize issues of equity, communication, and fiscal responsibility in Novato Unified School District and is committed to ensuring Novato students receive an excellent education in a safe environment.
Charles Hornbrook – Reed Union School Board
As a parent and professional, I am selective on how I spend my time volunteering balanced with my work in sales and financial operations. In 2014, I was appointed by the SF Unified School Board as a community advisor to oversee the $30MM public education and enrichment fund. In Tiburon, I have continued my focus on education, the environment and kids, volunteering as a coach for my son’s soccer and basketball teams and being appointed to the Parks Open Space and Trails Commission. In 2020, I was selected to the RUSD Strategic Planning Collaborative and led an effort to restore 5th grade Math Club during remote learning.
I will bring creativity, flexibility, and insight to the RUSD Board. I ask for your support.
Jacqueline Jaffee – Reed Union School Board
I am an attorney and work as Executive Director of Adopt A Family of Marin where we support low-income families in the County with short-term financial assistance. In 2017 I co-founded All In, a Tiburon non-profit that supports low-income families in RUSD. I have been a part of the RUSD since my oldest started kindergarten at Reed in 2012. I have an eighth grader at Del Mar, a fifth grader at Bel Aire and a second grader at Reed. For eight years I have volunteered for the PTA and the Foundation for Reed Schools.
I am a product of California public education. I am a believer in community mobilization and communication and its role in equitable education. It would be my extreme privilege to serve as a Trustee and continue as a champion for the community, our children and education.
Samantha Ramirez – San Rafael School Board – District 1
Samantha has worked with youth throughout her career.
Samantha served as the After-School Program Coordinator at Venetia Valley School from 2014 to 2018. She led a weekly after school program for newcomer immigrant students at Davidson Middle School from 2018 to 2020.
She currently works as Senior Program Coordinator for the Youth Leadership Institute. She also worked with Huckleberry Youth Programs, Canal Alliance, and Bay Area Community Resources. She loves her students and their families. Some of them call her Mizz Ram.
Samantha is from the San Rafael community. She has lived in the San Rafael City Schools district since 1995. She is a proud alumna of San Rafael City Schools District. She attended Gallinas (now Venetia Valley) school from first through eight grade. She attended Terra Linda High School from 2003 to 2006. She graduated from San Rafael High School in 2007.
Samantha is bilingual and bi-cultural. She is the daughter of Central American immigrants. She visited her 91-year-old grandpa in El Salvador three times this year. Samantha will become the first Millennial, LatinX elected official in Marin County. Representation matters.
Leslie Harlander – Tam Union School Board
Having served as a Trustee for the past five years, my service to our local high schools is driven by a commitment to protecting and improving the quality of education available to local students. All children deserve a high quality education.
I have been a Marin County resident for 34 years and my children attended Tam High.
My experience as a project manager for engineering and environmental cleanup projects, and as a former registered nurse, coupled with my experience serving as a Trustee, provides an important perspective for guiding our schools through current health, budget, and educational challenges. Solving complex issues requires collaboration with all stakeholders and no group should be excluded.
I believe that respect, collaboration and transparency always lead to a better outcome.
Tiffany McElroy – Tam Union School Board
I was raised in Santa Monica, California. I had a successful career as an Emmy Award winning
television news journalist, that led me to jobs in Portland, Oregon, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, New York City and San Francisco.
While working in New York City, I won two Emmy’s.
Before college, I lived in Italy for four years, in Emilia Romagna. I studied history at UCLA and while in college, I went to school in Mexico and France and lived in Washington, DC for a summer session, while interning at CNN.
I currently teach a course called, Race, Gender and Class in Media, at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
I live in San Anselmo with my daughter, a junior at (Drake) aka HS 1327.
Steven M. Levine – Tam Community Services District
I have lived in Tam Valley for 29 years with my wife, and 2 children whom attended our public schools.
I serve on the Tamalpais Community Services District’s (TCSD) Board of Directors, and previously served on the Park and Recreation Advisory Commission. I volunteer at TCSD events such as Creekside Friday, Octoberfest and Earth Day. I hold degrees in landscape architecture and environmental science from Syracuse University and NY State College of Environmental Science.
While working for the Corporate Real Estate Divisions of Wells Fargo and BofA I gained 40 years’ experience in property & energy management, strategic/financial planning, contract negotiations/administration, and business resumption.
I seek your support to continue my work with TCSD, where I will continue to provide knowledgeable, experienced and active leadership representing our residents’ best interests.