To maximize the potential of our community by harnessing and efficiently utilizing our resources while preserving the charm and character, valuing our history and preparing for the next generation to live, work and play here regardless of economic level.
There is nothing I have been more passionate about than the love I have for Ventura. From my first days of college at UCSB in the late 1970’s on my excursions south, I was intrigued by the natural beauty and history of San Buenaventura. Being mystified by the blue pacific, natural beaches and the enchantment of the California Islands off the coast I knew someday I would call this place home.
For 35 years I have been fortunate to be a citizen of our great City, one of the most historic and humble yet fortunate cities on the west coast if not the world. During that time I quickly became a very involved community advocate; knowing what attracted me to San Buenaventura were the people; the values of friendliness, creativity, appreciation and love for our community and fear of losing what we love to the pressures of a metropolis.
As my life took many turns, I organized with others to provide education, services and care for those impacted by the AIDS Pandemic, I worked hard to save our downtown from the wrecking ball on the Historic Preservation Alliance and fought for a plan that would value and bring life back to our historic core and then followed up with the formation of the Downtown Community Council to bring a voice where there was many yearned to be heard. I renovated several homes and built my own to compliment and showcase our eclectic and unique neighborhood. My partner and I opened Villa Tasca, to expand the offerings of downtown. Afterward, we opened Bella Sopani retail stores and then went on to open Villa Tasca Gardens.
My love of design, vision and creating led me to starting HE Landscape company 28 years ago and now employ almost 50 people. I participated on the 1999 Visioning committee, Chaired the Chamber of Commerce, the Tourism Bureau, the Social Justice fund, Aids Partnership and recently was President of Ventura Rotary where service above self is truly realized. I served on Parks and Recreation Commission, helped to create the Community Park and beautify Memorial Park as well as worked on educating others on our natural environment, and the delicate balance we live in. With my understanding and appreciation for the value of Art and Culture I bought and renovated the historic building that soon became Rubicon Theatre, and helped form the Ventura music festival and the Ventura Botanical Gardens. While humbled to be Citizen of the Year, celebrated by the LA Times as person to watch in 1999 for Ventura County, and named Ventura’s Renaissance man in 2005; nothing gives me greater pleasure than to know that I have helped to make Ventura an even better place by encouraging Venturans to believe in themselves.
As we sit at the precipice of change with the world challenges of Climate Change, Covid-19 virus, and social awareness of systemic bias, now is the time for new leaders to come forward to help set the policy for the brightest future while preserving and valuing what we love. At no other time is it more necessary to support our term limits as our standing council did in 2018 and let new leaders with new ideas and knowledge take the reins and lead us with passion and vision to overcome these and many other challenges. For this reason, I am running for City Council in the 2nd District!