- I led and managed a reading program for struggling students in 10 MDUSD schools that showed significant, measurable results for 300 students per year.
- Serving as PFC President, I launched innovative technology that streamlined communication and increased parent involvement.
- Working with a coalition of students, parents, and employees, we sent drafts and spoke up at two school district board meetings, resulting in the MDUSD School Board passing a Safe Haven Resolution.
- I initiated Safe Routes to School by writing a change.org petition to gain community awareness and to advocate for pedestrian safety. Construction is now complete on two new flashing pedestrian beacons, 3 new crosswalks, a new bike lane, digital speed signs, and sidewalk bulbouts that show down cars and create safer and shorter crossings for pedestrians.
Thanks to all of your support, I will begin my term on the Mt Diablo School Board this December. Our work is just beginning, as my role on school board is to represent all our constituents in our districtwide policy decisions and budget oversight. This cannot be done alone. As we begin this journey together, I want to recognize you for your participation and passion for our vision of a quality education for every student.
Please save the date to join me at the
Mt Diablo School Board Member Swearing In Ceremony
Date: Monday December 17th
Location: Mt Diablo Unified School District Office, Dent Center, 1936 Carlotta Drive, Concord, CA 94519.
This is a short ceremony at the beginning of the school board meeting that night. (please note, this meeting was originally set for December 10th, but was rescheduled to the 17th)
What a Journey!
While an uncontested school board race meant a sudden end to my campaign, we sure didn't stop campaigning this fall. I am so thankful for each of you who moved right over with me to volunteer for the urgent Measure J Campaign for Safe, Quality Schools. There was so much to do, starting a bond campaign committee from scratch, and Kathryn Durham Hammer stepped up to lead the campaign with gusto. Our small but mighty campaign team worked nonstop for months.
We did it! Measure J passed with an over 69% YES vote, thanks to the grassroots volunteer work of so many of you. Together we knocked on a total of 4,584 doors, made 1,627 phone calls, sent 15,207 text messages, and planted 900 lawn signs. Those person-to-person conversations are what makes the difference, and we worked all the way through on election day too, bringing in those last votes.
Here's a photo of wonderful teachers rallying for Measure J.
Parents, students, staff, principals and community groups all joined in too - walking miles for our schools.
This Thanksgiving, I am so thankful to live in a community of people who care so much about our students and schools, who are willing to step up and do the hard volunteer work it takes to ensure all voices are heard, and to invest in public education for all.
I hope to see you December 17th.
Our Mt Diablo students from Mt Diablo High and Riverview Middle truly inspire me. Over 50 of them walked the Bay Point neighborhoods on a Sunday afternoon for Measure J! They each had thought through exactly why Measure J school safety and upgrades were personally important, and bravely and enthusiastically knocked on doors.
But we can't be successful in this campaign without YOU. Each and every vote will show whether our communities are ready or not to invest in our school building safety & upgrades, and voting has already begun! Please join us to walk, text, email friends & colleagues to vote #YesonJMtDiablo .
This Saturday, take an hour or two to meet us at the beautiful Dave Brubeck park next to Concord High, eat our snacks & grab a clipboard, and then pair off to walk neighborhoods together. Your actions can make all the difference. Kids of all ages are welcome! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP and get our cool walking app. #TogetherWeCan
And please forward this email or share this video - an in depth view of Measure J:
Ever thankful for your participation,
Victory! Thank you all.
Our campaign was a success! An uncontested race means that I will begin as a Mt Diablo School Board member this December, and I will not be listed on the November ballot.
Thanks to all who came to our spontaneous victory ice cream celebration! You can view my thank you speech here:
and see the full album of photos on our Facebook page too.
Remember when I said I'd donate $10,000 to the Foundation? Yes, since we no longer needed to spend it on campaign materials for my school board race, we are able to give directly to the district-wide nonprofit to benefit all students. And we ended up deciding to write not just one large check, but two.
The first check we wrote was $8000 to the MDUSD Education Foundation, which is already providing arts this fall to students in our elementary schools, and will soon begin science and math enrichment as well. You can help these programs reach even more students -- Join the Foundation team for the Oct 6th Break a Sweat run/walk for education here.
The second was $2000 to the Yes on J - Neighbors for Safe, Quality Schools Campaign. We decided to invest some of our campaign funds in the Measure J campaign, because if it passes it will provide crucial funding to update our aging facilities and ensure student safety.
Call to Action - Get Involved to Pass Measure J for our kids!
Since that wonderful ice cream party, I've been busy non-stop volunteering for Measure J. To me this is one of the most urgent items on our local November ballot! I hope that you will join us.
The committee to pass Measure J is a grassroots organization of parents, teachers and community members who care about our students—and we need your help! Here are five ways you can make sure Measure J is a success:
- Vote YES on Measure J: Measure J will appear near the end of your long ballot—remember to go to the end and vote YES on J! If you vote by mail, look out for your ballot the week of October 8th.
- Endorse Measure J: Lend your name to the campaign by publicly endorsing the measure. Endorse by clicking here
- Put up a YES on J lawn sign: Show your support by putting up a YES on J sign in front of your home or business. Order yours here
- Donate to the campaign: This is a grassroots effort. Every donation — no matter how big or how small — will help get us over the top! Donate here.
- Precinct Walk for J: Walk your neighborhood with friends and help us talk to voters! Join us this Saturday in Clayton/Concord from noon-3pm, meeting at The Grove. Click here to RSVP!
See you out there soon.
Tonight our campaign is officially finished - and a success!
Only 3 people filed by tonight's deadline for the 3 seats, so I will become the new MDUSD school board member on December 7th.
Thank you to everyone who joined and helped along the way to build our community of people working to improve all our schools!
Please come to our Saturday Ice Cream event - which will now transition from a kickoff to a Thank You Celebration!
We can't wait to thank each and every one of you.
We'll also have news about upcoming actions you can take together with us to improve our schools.
Saturday August 18th, 1-3pm
Concord Community Park, Picnic Site #1 (by playground)
**Please RSVP so we know how much ice cream to buy!**
RSVP and see details here:
With less than 100 days til the election, I've pulled my papers and am getting ready to officially file my candidacy for Mt. Diablo School Board.
*What if only 3 people file for 3 spots? Then there would be no campaign, but I would still hold Meet & Greets in all communities to best represent everyone. (And if that happened, I would donate $10,000 of campaign funds to the MDUSD Education Foundation.)*
Either way, we'll soon be at a location near you!
Together we can reach every corner of our district to hear the hopes and concerns of our communities for our schools.
We have 3 Free events planned in Bay Point, Concord and Clayton:
Bay Point Meet & Greet, Saturday August 11th, 10am-2pm
- Free hot dog, corn dog, or car wash to the first 100 people!
- balloon animals for kids from Dilly Dally the Clown!
- Lorena Pena que habla español, estará también presente para poder facilitar
cualquier traducción que sea necesaria para sus preguntas y respuestas.
Concord Ice Cream Campaign Kickoff, Saturday August 18th, 1-3pm
- Free ice cream & toppings for all!
- Shady area with playground nearby
- Meet the campaign lead from your neighborhood!
- Share your ideas for our schools
Clayton Meet & Greet, Thursday August 30th, 7-8:30pm
- Informal opportunity to meet Cherise at a local Clayton home
Please take 5 minutes for 5 quick actions:
1. Click to endorse my campaign
2. Donate any amount - even $10 adds up
5. Invite - friends to like my Facebook page, follow me on Twitter & Instagram, and to events in their neighborhood. Let me know if you can host a Meet & Greet at a park, cafe, or home in your neighborhood too!
See you out there soon,
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