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September 23, 2020
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Coursey on the campaign trail

By: Irene Hilsendager
October 4, 2019

Chris Coursey held another fundraiser at Sally Tomatoes with a packed house. Chris feels he has the attributes to seek the supervisor’s position for the third district of Sonoma County. District three is the smallest of the five supervisor districts and includes north of central Santa Rosa as well as part of Rohnert Park.

Chris says, “While being mayor of Santa Rosa I brought strength and courage during the terrible fires. District three must get in new leadership and someone who has the ability and temperament to be a supervisor.”

Coursey feels the district, city and government need to build a partnership in order to make Sonoma County more solid. He is looking to the future to make sure his two grandsons have very good jobs, a place to live and that the housing situations gets better.

Chris states he is ready to take action and put in new blood on the board of supervisors. it will take hard work and long and tedious hours and determination to make changes.

We should all work together, churches, groups and government to make this a better district. There needs to be full participation among all of us. It just is not good enough to make plans, we have to do better and complete the plan.

Coursey reiterated on making sure to be in charge of public safety issues along with needing climate action now. We must preserve open spaces and create safe paths for the cannabis industry. New leadership can make a change by being the one person in the room to work on changing the future of District 3 in Sonoma County.

Chris had kicked off his first campaign fundraiser back in July; since then he has had several with one at Honey Badger Coffee Shop and Sally Tomatoes in Rohnert Park.

Winning the seat for supervisor will not be easy as he is facing Shirlee Zane, the boards’ longest tenured incumbent. Santa Rosa City Council Woman Julie Combs and Rohnert Park mayor Gina Belforte both dropped out of the race during the summer months.

Chris says, “the primary reason I ran is because I think it is important to have a choice in any election.” 

Being nearly a 40-year resident of Sonoma County, Chris said he is emphasizing a greater need to spur new housing developments, funding homelessness projects in a different approach and get the voters of this district.

Coursey expressed his top concerns were rebuilding from the wildfires, finding homelessness solutions and building more affordable housing.

A call was put into Supervisor Shirlee Zane and she emphasized that she has been busier than ever working on the director board for 11 years, providing staff and advocacy for the survivors for those who are still far away from recovering homes and understanding their lives. She also just had been to Rohnert Park to work with the SMART officials on the suicide that happened so recently. She wants to make water science and prohibit pesticides for the third district. 

Zane is seeking a fourth term on the board of supervisors. She says after the experience as board chairwoman during the 2017 wildfires it confirmed her decision to run again. She says her leadership and knowledge were needed.

Coursey declared, “I feel a call to public service. People no longer have faith in government and Congress can’t get anything done so it is up to the people and local government to make things work better.”

Chris says, “I want to talk to people, not at them.” He sends out invitations for his 65th birthday party Nov. 21. The venue has not been picked but it will be in Santa Rosa as another campaign fundraiser.