Seven candidates to compete for three seats
By Zachary Clark Daily Journal staff | Jul 26, 2018 | San Mateo Daily Journal
The council race in Redwood City is shaping up with two incumbents announcing they are not running and a slate of challengers ready to step up to the plate.
Three seats are up for grabs in November and seven candidates have thrown their hat in the ring so far with the filing deadline approaching Aug. 10, though that will be extended to Aug. 15 since at least one incumbent is not running. Councilmen Jeff Gee and John Seybert are both stepping down this year after having served two terms while incumbent Vice Mayor Diane Howard will run again in November. Howard is nearing 20 years of service on the council.
Gee said he would run earlier this year but announced the change of plans on his website last week. He said he will not seek a third term because he wants to spend more time with his family and career, adding that it’s time for a new generation of leaders to serve the city and bring a younger perspective.
So far, Jason Galisatus, Giselle Hale, Rick Hunter, Diana Reddy, Ernie Schmidt and Christina Umhofer have announced intentions to run for office.
The youngest candidate is Galisatus, a community activist and vice chair of the Complete Streets Advisory Committee. He is set to officially announce his candidacy at City Hall Thursday, July 26.
Two sitting planning commissioners have pulled nomination papers: Schmidt and Hale.
Hale has served on the Planning Commission since 2014 and is currently the director of media partnership at Facebook. She was a regional field director for the 2008 Obama campaign and was also a campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto. Schmidt is nearing the end of his third term on the Planning Commission and is currently its vice chair. He is also vice president of Fox Theatre Properties.
Another candidate, Rick Hunter, served on the Planning Commission as well as the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission, Education Foundation and Parks and Arts Foundation. Hunter is currently a certified public accountant.
Christina Umhofer, a local businesswoman, and Diana Reddy, a community activist are also running. Umhofer and her husband owned and operated Fred’s Garage, a Redwood City auto repair shop for 25 years as well as several small investment properties, according to her website. Reddy worked for the Sequoia Union High School District for over 30 years and is an elected delegate to the San Mateo County Democratic Party Central Committee.
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