Public Comment

Why I Am Running for Mayor

By Kahlil Jacobs-Fantauzzi
Thursday October 30, 2008 - 09:54:00 AM

I decided to run for Mayor because I strongly believe that our city needs new, authentic leadership that is in touch with all citizens. Historically, our mayors have catered only to specific communities. This has resulted in a city divided, with stark inequities in housing, education, safety, and opportunities. My mission as mayor will be to bring the city together as a community and to improve living conditions for all residents, to support ecologically sustainable improvements, and to reclaim the ideals of our city. 

I am committed to eliminating the inequitable gaps in our city—the housing gap, the achievement gap, the health gap, the safety gap and the technology gap. The focus of healthy environments and green practices needs to be inclusive, rather than just in certain neighborhoods. Affordable housing and transportation continue to be a problem for many Berkeley residents. We need to look for ways to support both owners and renters in making safe housing affordable and to improve transportation to all parts of our city  

I have been a Berkeley resident for over 14 years. I received BA from UC Berkeley in American Studies and my MA in Education & Technology and my teaching credential from University of San Francisco. I have devoted much of my time to improving youth services in the city, including six years on the Berkeley youth commission and teaching high school. I will make sure that schools have resources to serve our students and I will invest in our youth to make sure they have supervised after school enrichment programs, safe places to play, and leadership training opportunities.  

I value the art and culture of the diverse members of our community and will expand multicultural programs. I was the arts and programming director at La Pena Cultural Center and the International House. At KPFA I was elected to the local advisory board, as well as a member of the national board of Pacifica. I have also organized many cultural events to enrich the city, such as programs in public parks and community centers.  

I will bring something different and new to City Hall. I am committed to the well being of all members of our city and I have experience with a wider network of residents than past mayors. I am ready to bring a strong vision to the office and to work collaboratively with all community members to improve out city. These are critical times. We need change at the national level and the local level. We know that the leadership of the past will not work for the future. I ask that you write in my name for mayor. I will represent the people, not the status quo of the position.  


Kahlil Jacobs-Fantauzzi is a candidate for mayor of Berkeley.