Distrito Legislativo 17th

Distrito Legislativo 17th

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Welcome to the Fuse Progressive Voters Guide to the 2021 primary election! The Progressive Voters Guide compiles the information that allows you to make informed decisions about the races on your ballot, based on your values. You can learn about our partners and decision-making process here. Please share this guide with your friends and family!

Alcalde de Vancouver

Mayor Vancouver

  • Anne McEnerny-Ogle was elected to the Vancouver City Council in 2013 and was elected as mayor in 2018, making her the first woman elected to the position in the city's history.

    She has a long record of service to community causes such as Daybreak Youth Services and the Assistance League. While she served on the council, McEnerny-Ogle was an advocate for improving transportation options through development grants and green spaces like the Shumway Neighborhood Park. As mayor, she helped coordinate the city's COVID response, including organizing a food bank and vaccination clinic at Tower Mall. She has also supported the inclusive housing Heights District project.

    Her opponents are Doug Coop and Earl Bowerman. Coop is a Republican who is running to promote conservative ideology, curb families' reproductive rights, and promote business. Bowerman has challenged U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler as an alternative who would have been more loyal to former President Donald Trump. In 2019, while Bowerman was the Clark County Republican Chair, his own party sought his resignation after his inaction against a committee chair who had been convicted of inappropriate behavior with a teenage girl.

    McEnergy-Ogle has earned re-election as mayor of Vancouver.

    Anne McEnerny-Ogle

    Anne McEnerny-Ogle was elected to the Vancouver City Council in 2013 and was elected as mayor in 2018, making her the first woman elected to the position in the city's history.

Consejo de la Ciudad de Vancouver

Consejo de la Ciudad de Vancouver, Position #1

  • Evergreen Future
  • Kim Harless is a program manager at a paint recycling nonprofit and a Clark County Review commissioner. She has served in several roles oriented towards feeding the community, including as the president of Slow Food Southwest Washington, vice president of Urban Abundance, and treasurer of Clark County Food System. She also worked for nearly a decade as an environmental operations specialist with Clark County planning recycling systems, providing oversight on contracts.

    Harless states that as an Indigenous and Chicana single mother, she intends to center equity in both her campaign and her tenure on council if elected. She will lead with housing-first solutions to the homelessness crisis, which means securing shelter for people so that they can safely address any health, social, or economic issues they may be facing. In our interview with Harless, she wanted to provide technical expertise on creating a much more robust climate action plan. Police reform should be intentional and focused, she said, and emergency services should evolve so that a more diverse suite of services is available for residents who call 911 for disputes or mental health crises. Harless emphasized that overall, city government absolutely must address the needs of marginalized communities so that Vancouver is truly welcoming and healthy for all.

    Harless has worked hard to bring together the government and public to work on issues that the community cares about most. We recommend Harless in this race for her fresh perspective, strong progressive values, and the technical expertise she could bring to the city council.

    Kim Harless

    Kim Harless is a program manager at a paint recycling nonprofit and a Clark County Review commissioner.

  • Apoyadas Por: SEIU 775, SEIU Local 925, Sierra Club, Washington Conservation Voters , League of United Latin American Citizens SW WA Council 47013, Sunrise Movement of SW WA
  • Marketing specialist Mike Pond has been engaged with the community for several years, including as a precinct committee officer and as a board member of the Queer Youth Resource Center. He also serves as the chair of the Clark County Young Democrats and has been involved with many local campaigns. 

    Pond's campaign emphasizes housing, infrastructure, and the economy. In his interview with our local council, Pond said that he has spent years attending council meetings and getting to know the council members. He states that he's supportive of the body camera program for police officers and would consider looking over the police budget to make specific changes. On climate change, Pond believes that the city's climate action plan is a step in the right direction and that new infrastructure like the Operations Center should be developed with sustainability being the top priority. Housing and homelessness plans must be considered in tandem with Portland, he states, and he would bring a housing-first approach and supporting temporary sanctioned campsites so that wraparound services can be provided.

    Pond's knowledge of the council would also make him a good choice for Vancouver City Council, Position 1.

    Mike Pond

    Marketing specialist Mike Pond has been engaged with the community for several years, including as a precinct committee officer and as a board member of the Queer Youth Resource Center.

Otros Candidatos

Also in this race is John Blom, a real estate broker and former Clark County council member from District 3. On the county council, Blom served as a fairly moderate voice in his first term, which he ran for as a Republican before switching to "no party preference." He serves on the Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Southwest Washington and The Historic Trust.

Blom acknowledges that the homelessness crisis is entangled with many other issues, including lack of mental health services, surging costs of living, medical emergencies, and job loss. He states that if elected he will invest in response teams to connect people with services. He also states that law enforcement should provide more options for alternative responses for those who need help with behavioral or mental health. While Blom mentions that the best way to ensure public safety is to provide educational and economic opportunities for people to thrive, he is not specific about whether that would include moving any law enforcement funding to investments into the community.

Another challenger in this race is Justin Forsman. This is Forsman's fourth run for a council or mayoral seat in Vancouver. His previous campaign priorities include defending the Constitution and removing fluoride from the water supply.

Consejo de la Ciudad de Vancouver, Position #2

  • Incumbent Erik Paulsen was unanimously appointed to the council in 2019. He served for several years on the Vancouver Planning Commission before his appointment, including five years as chair of the commission, and he also served as a member of the Vancouver Affordable Housing Task Force and Southwest Clean Air Agency.

    Noting that affordability is a critical issue as demand outpaces supply, Paulsen believes the city should assist with strategies to provide housing at all income levels. He also supports investing in infrastructure to make Vancouver safer for cyclists and pedestrians.

    He is running against Tami Martin and Kara Tess. Martin has no campaign website or policy proposals available yet in mid-July. Her priorities listed in her voters' guide statement include supporting businesses and foster children. Tess has served as president of her former HOA and now serves as a board member of her current HOA. Her public campaign site does not currently have many priorities listed, and her interview with our local council reflected some uncertainty about what the city council can do. She states that the city should invest more in mental health and addiction resources, education to reduce the consumption of red meat and other carbon emission contributors, and said that she is running to listen to everyone and make the community a better place.

    Paulsen is the best choice for Vancouver City Council, Position 2.

    Erik Paulsen

    Incumbent Erik Paulsen was unanimously appointed to the council in 2019.

Consejo de la Ciudad de Vancouver, Position #3

  • Evergreen Future
  • Diana Perez is the founder of the local League of United Latin American Citizens. Perez has been highly active and awarded in the community for her civil rights and policy work. She was appointed by Gov. Inslee as a commissioner for Washington State Parks and Recreation and serves as a board member of Clark County Volunteer Lawyers Program, which provides law clinics for underserved communities.

    Perez's campaign is focused on improving life for all residents of Vancouver. She wants to incentivize mixed-income communities that have access to public transportation, and create bold solutions for affordable housing that brings the unsheltered community, service providers, and developers to the table. She believes that a community that invests in communities of color can strengthen the entire city, and would focus on removing discriminatory language in housing deeds, center living wage jobs, and look to help small businesses recover post-pandemic.

    She is running against Glen Yung and David Gellatly. Yung, a building contractor, waged a public fight against the Westside Bike Mobility Project. Unlike Perez, he has focused on private car usage over reducing climate emissions and clean air that investing in public transportation could provide. He uses the term equity frequently but seems to be focused on geographical equity, not the racial or economic equity that would help bring Vancouver together.

    Gellatly is the former chair of the Clark County Republican Party as well as a current executive board member of the party. He states that his top priorities would be homelessness and supporting businesses in the city. Gellatly was cited last year as one of the organizers of pro-Trump rallies in Vancouver during protests and after the shooting of Kevin E. Peterson, Jr. As the head of conservative activist group Activate Republicans, Gellatly is likely to continue to push backward policies on the council on social and racial justice, environmental reform, and more.

    Perez has worked tirelessly both professionally and on a volunteer basis to bring community-oriented solutions to Vancouver. She deserves your vote for Vancouver City Council, Position 3.

    Diana Perez

    Diana Perez is the founder of the local League of United Latin American Citizens. Perez has been highly active and awarded in the community for her civil rights and policy work. She was appointed by Gov.

Vancouver School District

Director, Position #2, Junta Escolar Vancouver

  • Incumbent Sandra Zavala-Ortega is running to retain Vancouver School Board, Position 2. She is a small business owner and was a family resource coordinator with Vancouver Public Schools for five years. Zavala-Ortega was appointed in this seat in April of this year.

    Zavala-Ortega started as a kindergartener in Vancouver Public Schools speaking no English. She is proud of the fact that she was a proficient speaker when she graduated and she wants to provide that same opportunity for all students. Zavala-Ortega also wants to use her experience as a business owner to implement responsible budgets for the district. Her campaign is emphasizing rebuilding trust in the community and emphasizing academic achievements.

    Sandra Zavala-Ortega

    Incumbent Sandra Zavala-Ortega is running to retain Vancouver School Board, Position 2. She is a small business owner and was a family resource coordinator with Vancouver Public Schools for five years. Zavala-Ortega was appointed in this seat in April of this year.

  • Also in the race for Vancouver School Board, Position 3 is Chartisha Roberts. She works with PeaceHealth, Legacy Systems, and TriMet and is a committee co-chair of the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials. She also serves as a mentor for young people in the Vancouver community.

    Roberts' campaign priorities include creating a more inclusive environment in the school district, prioritizing the mental health of students, expanding implicit bias training programs, and having more community conversations about how we can create a space where everyone can thrive.

    Chartisha Roberts

    Also in the race for Vancouver School Board, Position 3 is Chartisha Roberts. She works with PeaceHealth, Legacy Systems, and TriMet and is a committee co-chair of the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials. She also serves as a mentor for young people in the Vancouver community.

Otros Candidatos

Also in this race are Kathleen OClaire and Michelle Belkot. OClaire is a school risk manager with Vancouver Public Schools. She does not have a campaign website or clear platform as of mid-July. Belkot is a veteran who works in construction and engineering contracts. Her platform is not robust and emphasizes the need for in-person learning without acknowledging the COVID-19 pandemic that forced students and teachers to be remote for months.

Director, Position #3, Junta Escolar Vancouver

  • Incumbent Wendy Smith is running for re-election to Vancouver School Board, Position 3. Smith has served as a school board director since 2017 and was previously a teacher for 17 years. Her campaign platform is focused on addressing the mental health challenges facing students, improving the school board's transparency, and supporting dual-language programs. Smith wants to respect community demands to ensure resources are allocated to programs that will improve the lives of students.

    Smith is facing Megan Gabriel and Jorge Bailey in this race. Gabriel is the project manager of the Oak Creek Elementary School Garden Program. In her interview with our local council, Gabriel lacked detailed answers and did not offer a progressive vision for the district. Bailey directs three non-profit organizations in the Clark County area but similarly lacks a detailed campaign platform or a progressive vision for the role.

    Smith is the best choice in the race for Vancouver School Board, Position 3.

    Wendy Smith

    Incumbent Wendy Smith is running for re-election to Vancouver School Board, Position 3. Smith has served as a school board director since 2017 and was previously a teacher for 17 years.