The ballots are in! We’ve selected the following candidates as our #1 picks in the Oakland races.
Mayor Libby Schaaf
Mayor Libby Schaaf has demonstrated a commitment to tackling the issues our organization was created to address. She led the creation of a Department of Transportation to raise the level of strategic thinking around how we move about our city and integrate disparate transportation functions. She has been an advocate for building more housing from ADUs to “missing middle” forms like triplexes and quadplexes to towers near BART. And most impressively, she has become increasingly vocal about the need for regional solutions, calling out cities that contribute to the jobs-housing imbalance and engaging in the CASA process to develop a framework for regional action. We look forward to continuing to work alongside Mayor Schaaf to maintain Oakland’s status as a regional leader on these and other issues.
Auditor Courtney Ruby
Courtney Ruby previously served as Oakland Auditor from 2007-2014. During her tenure as City Auditor, Courtney turned around a troubled agency and made it a model of accountability, transparency, and results. The office was honored in 2014 with a national award for its work and Courtney was named one of the Most Influential Professionals in Government Auditing. Courtney garnered local, statewide and national interest for the office’s hard-hitting performance audits and investigations. Considering the speed at which new developments are approved and completed in the city of Oakland, having a City Auditor known for her hard work and efficiency is vitally important if we want to help Oakland grow.
District 2 Abel Guillen
Councilmember Abel Guillen is quite possibly the best housing advocate up for election this fall. He understands the twin challenges of raising incomes and creating housing options to address the housing crisis. He has successfully advocated for new construction in District 2 that adds to the community’s vitality through inclusive community benefits agreements. We believe he will fight for policies that spur the creation of more “missing middle” housing such as the broader use of ADUs in single-family neighborhoods with an eye towards the transportation and other infrastructure investments these changes will require.
District 4 Nayeli Maxson
Nayeli Maxson’s experience as district representative has given her a front-row seat to the challenges of meaningfully engaging our communities in public processes. She has used those insights to develop a deep respect for the various perspectives at play in any dispute and tenacity to find solutions that solve for most legitimate concerns. On the housing front, this means supporting transit-oriented development, a more systemic approach to approvals and pipeline management, and a willingness to engage with unions to help grow the supply of skilled workers needed to meet our construction needs. She alone among the D4 candidates explicitly expressed a willingness to upzone parts of the district that are well served by transit to ensure the District does its part to meet the city’s housing needs and open up access to its great amenities.
District 6 Marlo Rodriguez
Marlo Rodriguez, a practicing nurse, brings a common sense approach to challenges presented by the housing crisis along with an appreciation of the deeper forces at play. She specifically calls out the history of exclusionary zoning practiced in communities like Rockridge and calls for correcting that injustice to take pressure off other communities bearing the brunt of housing pressures. She will be a strong advocate for transit-oriented development and increased transparency around the disposition of public lands.
Stay tuned for opportunities to support these candidates and others who will implement the real solutions our housing crisis demands.