Blogging Bayport Alameda

October 15, 2010

Truly, you have a dizzying intellect

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: , — Lauren Do @ 6:06 am

Folks may have heard the news, I posted it on my Twitter feed earlier this week, but School Board candidate Sheri Palmer withdrew from the race a few nights ago. And while Susan Davis over on In Alameda covered the withdrawal from the race, and Sheri Palmer’s endorsements of Mike McMahon and Margie Sherratt, she didn’t cover one important item that led to Sheri Palmer’s decision to exit the race. This was Sheri Palmer’s full statement:

I have announced my support for Mike McMahon and Margie Sherrat. After I read Susan Davis’ endorsements this past Friday, I had to agree with her whole-heartily. This campaign has reached a crossroads where the division in philosophy and goals are very apparent. Experience is critical and I would be extremely naïve to think that I could offer the same leadership and resources as Mike and Margie. I am encouraging all my supporters to vote for the both of them as a team.

Thanks again,

I found this highly amusing in light of the challenge the other day in the comments section by a City Council candidate who asked me what were my credentials and qualifications for making endorsements.

Of course, I never realized that there was a pre-requisite list that existed out there that one had to meet before making election endorsements on one’s own blog. That was certainly news to me. I hope the endorsement police don’t come after me for not being properly credentialed.

I think that the impact of Susan Davis’ endorsements that she made is significant because it shows the power that one person has, other than just a single vote, if they present their reasoning in a clear, concise, positive, and effective manner. It’s unfortunate, but the majority of voters probably will have done only a cursory review of each candidate, and often rely on people they can trust who they know will have done their homework on a particular issue. Whether it be a friend, family member or your friendly local neighborhood blogger, it’s the level of trust that particular person has built that will be the determining factor.

But I’m going to close this off by echoing Susan Davis and thank Sheri Palmer for having the courage and conviction to run for School Board in the first place. The slow clap award for the month goes to Sheri Palmer.

Oh wait, I had one more thing actually and this is a complete digression from the topic at hand. So apparently there is this Facebook page, yes, the same one that considers anyone on your Facebook “Friends” list to actually be your Friend and manages to have “Friends” from Malaysia; India; Nepal (2 people from Nepal!); American Canyon, CA, and I noticed a new person from Indonesia all interested in “liking” a Facebook group about one election in one city in California. Go figure, right? Anyway, so the group has now decided that because they spotted a reference in the local SunCal suit to yours truly (which I pointed out two weeks ago) that I am “supporting” SunCal in their suit, because they are “citing information” from me in their filings.

As I pointed out previously, the information from me is information that they printed out from my blog posting on the topic of email retention by the City. I guess that means that the City of Alameda is also “supporting” the SunCal case since they use information from the City in their filing as well. Whenever I’m confronted with the contorted logic from this group,I can’t help but be reminded of dialogue between Vizzini and the Dread Pirate Roberts.


  1. Lauren, he’s just “connecting the dots that nobody else sees” (his comments). I don’t think it occurs to him that nobody sees those connections to those mystery unseen dots because they are not there. Reason just doesn’t come into the thing. At all. Ever.

    Comment by Kate Quick — October 15, 2010 @ 6:33 am

  2. The only qualifications needed to express an opinion is a pulse and the means to do so. I venture to guess that not all the candidates for elected office this year are qualified but that’s not stopped them from running. (You can fill in the names yourself!) I don’t share all your opinions, Lauren, but I’ll defend to the death your right to express them.

    Comment by Denise Shelton — October 15, 2010 @ 8:03 am

  3. Adam Gillitt is a piece of work and ever since he fell in with the NIMBY slate he’s gotten worse and worse

    Comment by E — October 15, 2010 @ 8:12 am

  4. E. he didn’t just fall in with the NIMBY slate, he was created by them to come on sites like this and disrupt them. If he wasn’t actually running for council he would just be another TROLL like Mr. Green or crazy JOEL.

    Comment by John piziali — October 15, 2010 @ 8:48 am

  5. This site would not be much fun to look at if it was just a group of like-minded individuals patting each other on the back about how smart they are to agree on everything. Here’s my quote for the day: “The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!”–Jack Kerouac

    Comment by Denise Shelton — October 15, 2010 @ 9:08 am

  6. Good quote but here it would be “Awww shit!

    Comment by Jack Richard — October 15, 2010 @ 9:14 am

  7. So, Lauren, you wrote this post basically because I hurt your feelings because I pointed out you have no authority to make endorsements other than to force your views on people.

    Is this blog just a mechanism to satisfy your ego and rally your fan club of equally disaffected Do-bots to go out and make noise about whatever tickles your fancy?

    Or, as it’s starting to become clearer day by day, are you just another paid employee of SunCal, receiving money from them, like your pals at the CADC, to push flawed and unwanted candidates and an agenda to try to make your losing 15% look louder and more relevant than it is?

    Either way, the amount of attention you focus solely on me as a Candidate for City Council, knowing my ethics and agenda to serve the Citizens, and with SunCal sniffing unsuccessfully around my campaign, and the election only 18 days away, shows that you are more concerned with showing off your own ego than being an honest and sincere information source.

    Between you and John White, this City really doesn’t need couple of mini-Bill O’Reilly’s and Ann Coulter’s running around performing for the cameras.

    (No disrespect meant to either professional wingnut…)

    Comment by Adam Gillitt — October 15, 2010 @ 9:52 am

  8. Endorsements:

    Before my illness, I used to stop by my favorite, local, disreputable pub most days for a beer and a chat with the other regulars. (Interesting how much a blog resembles a neighborhood bar…) I still get over there once or twice a week.

    Endorsements. Most of the folks in there are my age, some older, one guy in his seventies still doing construction work. At least a half dozen ‘Nam vets, several terminal. None of these folks give a fig about Alameda politics, but I encourage them to vote and have a say.

    They know I follow all this crap, and so they ask me howbthey should vote. And I tell them, naming candidates I favor, and yea or nay on the various initiatives. My endorsements. And they follow my advice, out of the kind of mutual respect barflies have for one another.

    So I always swing at least 50, sometimes as many as 100 votes besides my own. And I get a kick out of wielding such influence, even as Lauren does here. That’s politics in small town America!

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 15, 2010 @ 10:09 am

  9. Adam, get some professional help … soon!!!

    Comment by David N — October 15, 2010 @ 10:20 am

  10. I hear CSPAN is going to start a new show called “$%#* politicians say”. Adam, I nominate your phrase “you have no authority to make endorsements ” as one of the most clueless ones, destined to make the opening segment of their show.

    Comment by notadave — October 15, 2010 @ 11:09 am

  11. Adam is well on the way to becoming a Mini-Me David Howard!

    Comment by MM — October 15, 2010 @ 11:39 am

  12. Go Do-bots Go!

    Notice the deflection and lack of interest in talking about the issues? It’s like you have been reading a Tea Party manual. Or, maybe you just have a crush on me? If you do, try reading my site at to learn what my campaign is actually about so you will sound better informed about the independence of my campaign and my views.

    Comment by Adam Gillitt — October 15, 2010 @ 11:52 am

  13. 7: I find it interesting that those who are short on capabilities, experience, or knowledge sometimes are the first to criticize those who actually have the requisite qualifications or standing to speak with authority.

    I would trust Lauren to actually BE on the City Council more than I would trust a couple of the current crop of candidates. (I’m not just thinking of the professional clown who is running for mayor when I say this, either.)

    Lauren is intelligent, literate, thoughtful, and a terrific researcher. I respect her credibility and her good judgment, too, so find her endorsements valuable.

    Lauren Do for Council in 2012! 🙂

    Comment by Jon Spangler — October 15, 2010 @ 11:56 am

  14. 13:

    This from the only person in Alameda who DIDN’T get paid by SunCal?

    Clearly you’re a clever man who knows how to get on the right side of… oh wait, that’s not you.

    Comment by Adam Gillitt — October 15, 2010 @ 12:01 pm

  15. 12. Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww … man, you sure are delusional!

    Why not answer JKW’s question?

    Comment by David N — October 15, 2010 @ 12:05 pm

  16. Delusional? Didn’t Ms. Do endorse both “Yes on B” and “Yes on E”? And now, with her endorsement of the SunCal Slate, we’ll soon find out exactly who is delusional and who isn’t. When it comes to votes, only the outcomes count.

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 15, 2010 @ 12:20 pm

  17. Post#8 So let me get this strait, Dennis Green goes to a bar and tells 50 to 100 people at this bar how to vote, and out of respect they say sure I’ll vote however you want me to. Do you buy them a beer or are they already drunk?. If you buy them a beer are you guilty of buying votes?. If they are drunk they will probably forget what you told them, or may not even be registered voters.
    Well at least you have the respect of a lot of barflies if no one else. P.S. does Adam campaign there.

    Comment by John piziali — October 15, 2010 @ 1:50 pm

  18. Piziali — obviously, you spend all your time online instead of at the neighborhood bar. Too bad. Makes a great sociological study. I have no idea how many of my friends vote, take mt advice, or are even registered, but they are no more disabled than the people who belly up to this bar.

    And over the last 20 years, all but two of my political picks in Alameda have prevailed, so I’ll put my record alongside Lauren’s any day. And exactly how prescient are YOU, my friend? (Not being condescending here, just ironic!)

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 15, 2010 @ 2:44 pm

  19. Speaking of School Board candidate Sheri Palmer backing out, I’ve heard rumors that Frank Matarrese is backing out of the mayor’s race… Is this true?

    Comment by Richard — October 15, 2010 @ 2:53 pm

  20. Dennis, are you counting Adam G. as one of your political picks for this race?

    Comment by BC — October 15, 2010 @ 3:05 pm

  21. I like Adam, and vie voted for him, will endorse him at my pub, but am not predicting any winners in the race for C.C. — only Tam and Bonta as losers. Your picks? I don’t gamble, but we could always pose some imaginary side bets.

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 15, 2010 @ 3:26 pm

  22. My bet would be Johnson and Tam, with Sweeney and Bonta fighting for third, but my soothsaying record isn’t good. If I win, mine’s an IPA with a whiskey chaser!

    Comment by BC — October 15, 2010 @ 3:48 pm

  23. “do-bots”

    bahahaha. I think this guy is a creation of 4chan.

    if we’re going to have unfounded accusations such as one that LD is an employee of suncal (roffle), I think we should start one about Adam Gillitt. I heard that he eats puppies.

    Comment by E — October 15, 2010 @ 3:54 pm

  24. Post 18, Dennis you said your picks have been correct except for two. Are you picking Adam to win or just talking him up at your pub. We are a sick bunch at this bar. I have done really well over the last twenty years picking council winners. I picked Pat Bail and Kenny the clown I think they were a slate.

    Comment by John piziali — October 15, 2010 @ 4:11 pm

  25. With all the frenzy around the supposed Suncal slate(which to me is DeHaan, Sweeney and Johnson, since they are benefiting the most from Suncal’s recent tactics), folks have overlooked the fact that for all practical purposes, Suncal as an entity no longer exists:

    Comment by notadave — October 15, 2010 @ 4:34 pm

  26. #25 Not so fast there,

    SunCal has reinvented themselves

    Comment by RM — October 15, 2010 @ 4:47 pm

  27. Comment #35 under Jumping the Shark:

    More to the point of Lauren’s post, SunCal is trying to influence this election. Today, waiting in my campaign mailbox, was this check for $250:
    I will not be cashing it, I will be returning it to its source because of several reasons: they are located in Irvine, not Alameda; if you read their website at, it’s about 50 lbs. of BS in a 5 lb. bag, and most significantly, the first link I could find about them other than their own promotions was this:
    As I have said on numerous occasions: My candidacy is about serving the Citizens of Alameda and their interests first and foremost. Unlike other candidates, I will not entertain donations from outside concerns, whether they be developers, lawyers for developers, companies associated with developers, or friends of developers. I do not need a campaign war chest of $50K to prove my ethics or sincerity to the people.
    Comment by Adam Gillitt — October 14, 2010 @ 9:05 pm

    Comment by RM — October 15, 2010 @ 4:52 pm

  28. 12. “Notice the deflection and lack of interest in talking about the issues?”

    Are you talking about yourself Adam? If we took 100 random posts by you on various blogs and counted them by content, I’m certain at least 85 to 90 would be purely venal snark and insults and of the remainder maybe half would be about issues.

    Comment by M.I. — October 15, 2010 @ 5:10 pm

  29. And how many of the posts here are about issues and not just personal insults having no force behind them? Tiresome. I’m everything you say I am, and nothing like that at all. No one posting to this site sees into the souls of the others, no matter how hard they strain to do so.

    Meanwhile, L.D.’s original posts get lost in the flood, instead of inspiring a real dialogue. Pretentions to objectivity and neutrality rule the day. The aleague of Women Voters was once a re,iable source of information, and endorsements, but no more. As for the Democratic Club, I haven’t been a Democrat since Chicago ’68, and Mayor Daley’s police riots.

    But I follow “all this crap” so that I can advise my barfly friends about the least toxic politicians in Alameda. And I’ve advised those who have computers, a high percentage, to visit this site and decide for themselves. Welcome to the Island.

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 15, 2010 @ 5:46 pm

  30. 21
    I like Adam too. I met him at the Webster Jam. I like John P, as well, I met him at the Webster Jam, in fact, I like pretty much everybody I meet, that’s why I don’t like to meet too many people. It tends to shade my prejudices.

    Comment by Jack Richard — October 15, 2010 @ 5:52 pm

  31. Your right Jack, meeting people and talking to them is so much harder than just sitting here typing out a bunch of B.S. But it is so much more rewarding.

    There fore I am proposing that we should all have to meet at a bar, order drinks and start talking. I think our first meeting should be at Tiki Toms.

    Comment by John piziali — October 15, 2010 @ 6:14 pm

  32. 19 – Matarrese is definitely not backing out. Where did you hear that? His new video is all over the place. Someone just emailed it to me. Also, lots of pro-Frank letters in the AJ today.

    31 – How come none of the newspapers managed to get “Tiki Torch” in the headlines? That was a no brainer.

    Comment by Denise Shelton — October 15, 2010 @ 6:29 pm

  33. John, I’m game. Second choice is that garbage barge in San Leandro Bay.

    Comment by Jack Richard — October 15, 2010 @ 6:39 pm

  34. Rosemary (27), are you Adam’s PR flack?

    Comment by David N — October 15, 2010 @ 10:41 pm

  35. why doesn’t SunCal send ME money? If they do I’ll run for something… I’m so crushed. Baby needs a new pair of shoes.

    Comment by Alana Dill — October 16, 2010 @ 1:03 am

  36. No. I am interested in the truth.

    The truth is that SunCal has reinvented themselves as Argent Management and have sent deHaan, Sweeney, and Gillitt checks for $250.

    Whyyyy is Argent Management sending these candidates money?

    That’s the Point.

    Comment by RM — October 16, 2010 @ 8:47 am

  37. Let me emphasize that deHaan, Sweeney, and Gillitt returned those checks to SunCal now doing business as Argent Management in Irvine.

    Comment by RM — October 16, 2010 @ 8:59 am

  38. Adam, the futon selling business must be slow. You sure do spend a lot of time on this blog.

    Just sayin’.

    Comment by Dave L. — October 16, 2010 @ 9:11 am

  39. 29. I just had an image of Dana Carvey’s impersonation of Ross Perot. Anybody recall? “jibba-jibba-jibba-jab, jabba-jabba-jibaa-jibba-jabba-jibba”.

    And the move “Being John Malkovich” in the scenes were everybody has a Malkovich head and the only words they speak are “Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich”.

    Dennis-Dennis-Green-Green, rooty-tooty Green, Dennis-menace-Dennis,Chamber of Commerce, Dennis-Dennis, Ron Cowan ahga-blahga-snizzle-shizle-169 IQ-fleep-fart, Dennis-Dennis-Green-troll-green-pirate bad ass-grizzle, gristle, shnizzle, whizzle,my minions, fizzle shnizzle, legions of them!……..poot snoot, psssssss…..fffft, flicker, poink………….

    Comment by M.I. — October 16, 2010 @ 11:42 am

  40. Hey Piziali, read #39. I told you we shouldn’t have left Mark on the garbage barge last night. He’s still at it.

    Comment by Jack Richard — October 16, 2010 @ 12:05 pm

  41. 36: RM,

    If I were Suncal/Argent (still the same folks: a rose by any other name…) and I wanted to deceitfully entrap candidates who had promised to not take developer money, I might send them a contribution check and hope they would cash it.

    (Of course I might disguise the check a little better than Suncal/Argent did.)

    Then I could turn around and “surprise” them with a nasty ad proving that they had taken money from developers.

    This – along with the nasty anti-Gallant mailer, poll, and ads – is why I no longer support Suncal. (I still support Peter Calthorpe’s plan for AP, but that plan can be implemented independent of Suncal.)

    Comment by Jon Spangler — October 16, 2010 @ 4:57 pm

  42. I think Mark and Dennis need to sit down and have a BEER SUMMIT. While you and I have a sip of the grape.

    Comment by John piziali — October 16, 2010 @ 5:28 pm

  43. PP Thursday wine for 10-smack-a-roo’s I’ll be there 5 till…over. MI and the Green meany (and anybody else) know where it’s at. Beer at half price, for beer summit. Nice niece booze tender, cheap food…

    Comment by Jack Richard — October 16, 2010 @ 6:55 pm

  44. #41–Let’s get this straight:

    A rat by any other name is still a rat.

    SunCal/Argent/SCC Alameda Point LLC are the same whatever name they use.

    Comment by RM — October 16, 2010 @ 7:28 pm

  45. #44
    So what’s your Point?

    Comment by Linda Hudson — October 16, 2010 @ 8:11 pm

  46. RM, so what is your point? Businesses change their names and reinvent themselves all the time. I am much more concerned about the attempted interference with our local election than I am about the name of the corporation attached to it. SunCal or Argent or whomever, it is wrong. They should butt out. It is plenty bad enough that people are being mean and nasty to each other and fabricating all sorts of lies during this election. Adding this to it just makes it worse.
    No matter who gets elected, we will all have to get along and move the community forward after the election. If we burn our house down, we will be homeless.

    Comment by Kate Quick — October 16, 2010 @ 8:16 pm

  47. #46 The point is that SunCal izzz still in the game. Very much still in the game. We are not “imagining it: and they “have not gone away.”

    Comment by RM — October 16, 2010 @ 9:18 pm

  48. 38. Ditto for RM … the real estate business must be verrrry slow.

    Comment by David N — October 16, 2010 @ 9:54 pm

  49. 38. Ditto for RM … the real estate bizness must be verrrry slow!

    Comment by David N — October 16, 2010 @ 9:55 pm

  50. Wow … ignore the dup (and the creative spellings) 🙂

    Comment by David N — October 16, 2010 @ 11:02 pm

  51. 47:

    RM, you attribute more power to Suncal/Argent than they actually have – and less competence and good sense than we have to the Alameda electorate.

    Suncal is toast in this town and will not/cannot come back. All they are doing in their latest campaign is proving just how ineffective and self-destructive they can be when they (apparently) seek revenge on their enemies.

    Comment by Jon Spangler — October 17, 2010 @ 12:31 am

  52. Jon, what part of “Orange County” don’t you understand?

    And, M.I., nice impression of Liberace, but aren’t those embers of Tiki Tom’s still a little warm?

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 17, 2010 @ 6:42 am

  53. 46.
    Right on, Kate. I agree 100%. You and I are the only people who get along and everyone else should butt out of our local election, democrat, republican, you name it. They’re all fabricating lies and being very nasty. They probably even made all those Tiki people homeless.

    Comment by Jack Richard — October 17, 2010 @ 10:22 am

  54. 52. I made no Tiki Tom reference, though I know the former Pier 29 was one of your haunts. I think that was John P. being coy. Liberace? nah, it was the dialogue of the endless tape loop “Being Dennis Green”, a perpetual rerun to which we have all been over exposed.

    Comment by M.I. — October 17, 2010 @ 11:13 am

  55. MI, you WISH!

    For once, I agree with Kate that most of the folks posting here should not be allowed to vote! And if you can’t grasp the Tiki Tom’s reference for what it is, we can’t help you.

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 17, 2010 @ 3:25 pm

  56. Harbor Bay was created from turning an an asparagus farm into housing. Around 1977, Harbor Bay Isle Associates (Ron Cowan) signed an agreement with the city to allow him to build 3,200 homes on Bay Farm Island. HBI built a total of 2,973 homes in five phases over 30 years. Cowan wants to build the remaining housing on the Mif Albright golf course. Does this have anything to do with the $10,000 that he gave to Johnson?

    Comment by Carole — October 17, 2010 @ 6:27 pm

  57. O.K. Jack and Dennis
    Didn’t say people shouldn’t be allowed to vote. Even if one is an all time jerk, they have the right to vote any way they want, and should.
    Didn’t say I was the only one who can get along with others. Right now there are a couple of people in this town I would love to strangle (metaphorically, of course). What I did say is that if people are so evil towards each other while campaigning, it hardly sets the scene for cooperation after the election in solving our City’s many problems.

    Comment by Kate Quick — October 17, 2010 @ 6:56 pm

  58. Kate is SOOO sincere! Except, of course, when she’s being sarcastic. Sometimes her moods even overlap.

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 18, 2010 @ 7:22 am

  59. #56: That explains Interim City Manager Ann Marie Gallant’s unwillingness to meet with the Alameda Junior Golf Association, which has a business plan to keep the Mif open with a $250,000 golf foundation grant and $100,000 from the City. Instead, Gallant has been negotiating with KemperSports to consider their $1 million plan for the golf course, while according to “The Island”, “City officials also asked Kemper to run the numbers on five fresh configurations for the course, including scenarios where the Mif was closed.” Ron Cowan’s $10,000 donation could certainly smooth a path toward the land swap deal he wants. We’ll see what happens after tomorrow’s long-awaited City Council vote on the matter.

    Comment by charlie — October 18, 2010 @ 12:58 pm

  60. Help!

    The AUSD Surplus Property Advisory Board Committee, of which I am a member, met for the first time tonight.

    We would better represent the demographics of our community if we had an African-American member. Please let anyone you know who has ties into the African American community of this opportunity for public service. Anyone interested, or who would like to nominate someone, can send an e-mail to Renewed Hope at Or else contact the school district’s Karin Faizi
    Admin. Asst. to CBO
    (510) 337-7066

    To be considered for this board, I would need to nominate you by Wednesday, October 27th. The normal application period has already closed.

    See correspondence below for details or the AUSD website at

    Bill Smith


    Gretchen, Jeff, Jon, and Kate,

    The AUSD Surplus Property Advisory Committee at its first meeting tonight agreed to my suggestion to provide multiple opportunties for public input at our future meetings. We will have a general public comment period at the beginning of the meeting, the public can comment on each item on the agenda, and another general public comment period at the end of the meeting. We are, for now anyway, a committee forming out of the limelight and establishing our operating rules. So if you have any other ideas to shine a little light on our work, please pass them on. We were basically instructed not to communicate via e-mail at all, and to communicate with no more than one other member betweeen meetings (actually could be 2 members as we require 6 for a quorum, so four to take any action).

    Also, we could add another member, especially an African-American member, to better represent the demographics of our community. If you know of someone who could help recruit, or serve, please forward this e-mail to them or otherwise let them know. Need to identify them no later than Wednesday, October 27th. We are schedule to certify that our committee is representative of the community at our November 3rd meeting.


    ———- Forwarded message ———-
    From: William Smith
    Date: Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 10:38 PM
    Subject: Request for Help Finding Representative for African-American Community on AUSD Surplus Real Property Advisory Committee
    To: Vickie Smith , Marie Gilmore
    Cc: Delores Wills , Laura Thomas , Ross Ojeda , Lois Pryor , Lynette Lee , Michael Yoshii , Flavia , Lena Tam , Doug Biggs

    Renewed Hope Colleagues,

    Please forward this e-mail to Vickie Smith – I’m not sure I have her current address. Also, please forward this message to anyone else who might be interested in helping recruit, or volunteer, to serve on the committee.



    Vickie and Marie,

    The school district’s Surplus Real Property Advisory Committee is charged with helping the City determine whether or not school property is surplus and can be disposed of, that is sold. As government agencies have first dibs on the property, the City is interested and likely will acquire the property.

    Anyway, the committee is required to reflect the diversity in the community. The current makeup is 9 caucasians and 1 asian. There are no African-Americans on the committee. Asians are the largest single “ethnic” group in our school system.

    The committee would be a good chance for a member of the African-American community who is interested in helping our schools to do so – or even to just more actively participate in government and strengthen community contacts. If the school board is satisfied with the job the committee does on the old Island School site, especially if it gets serious about closing schools, the committee may be advising the school board on whether or not open schools should be closed and declared surplus. So the visibility of this committee may increase if our school’s financial condition continues to worsen.

    To be appointed to the Committee by the school board, someone interested in serving would have to contact me by Wednesday, November 27th. The committee meets on the first and third Wednesday’s of the month (November 3 and 17th) from 6-8 p.m. in AUSD offices in the old Alameda High School. We plan to issue our final report by January. We are scheduled to vote at the November 3 meeting as to whether or not we adequately represent the demographics of our community. Even if you do not want to serve on the committee, please review the members below and let me know if you think the committee adequately represents the demographics of our community. I am hesitant to vote to certify that we do without some input from our African American community.

    For the agenda of our first meeting today, requirements for the committee to represent the community, and charge of the committee, see the attached file.


    Committee Members

    Aidan Barry – Developer
    Douglas Biggs – Exec. Dir. Alameda Point Collaborative for housing and assistance
    Italo Capestri – Architect
    Victor Jin – Realtor (Asian)
    Arthur Kurrasch – Retired Teacher, City Housing Commission
    Rodrigo Orduna – Senior Planner for Alameda County
    Mark Ruckman – Mgr. Fortman Marina
    Shelby Sheehan – Environmental Scientist and parent of two elementary students
    William Smith – Renewed Hope Housing Advocates
    Melanie Wartenberg – Child counselor and mother

    William J. Smith
    Alameda, CA 94501

    Comment by William Smith — October 20, 2010 @ 11:00 pm

  61. How about Clay Pollard? I bet he’d love to be asked.

    Comment by Adam Gillitt — October 20, 2010 @ 11:17 pm

  62. Adam,

    Great suggestion!

    I’ll ask him. We meet the day after the election so if he loses, he’d still have a way to serve.


    Comment by William Smith — October 21, 2010 @ 7:26 am

  63. Bill, as President of the Chamber in the mid-Nineties, I made an effort to broaden our Board, appointing the first African-American, Floyd Hibbits, who eventually became President. Floyd’s term was somewhat conflicted, as he hired a new CEO without full Board approval, a person who turned out to be less than stellar for the Chamber. So watch out simply trying to balance things demographically. I learned my lesson, and you may too!

    Comment by Dennis Green — October 21, 2010 @ 12:48 pm

  64. Dennis,

    Your advice rings true with me! I have already had an unpleasant experience with trying to balance a board demographically. So I will be careful. If we who support the school reach out to minority communities, we just might find the extra few hundred extra votes needed to get the parcel tax passed.

    Appreciate the concern.

    Comment by William Smith — October 21, 2010 @ 10:11 pm

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