Local Races – 2018

Here we highlight progressive candidates for local elections in 2018. 


“Be the change you want to see in the world.”

In the fourth grade Geneviéve Jones-Wright decided to follow in the steps of Justice Thurgood Marshall and become a “social engineer.” That decision included attending Howard Law and receiving the same training he did. Although no one in her family had graduated from college before, she made up her mind at the age of nine to become an attorney and use the law to help those who are vulnerable and oppressed. This desire led her to work within our criminal justice system.

A native San Diegan, Jones-Wright has served the County of San Diego as a Deputy Public Defender since 2006. In this capacity, she has represented clients charged with a variety of crimes and has spent over a decade experiencing the strengths and pitfalls of the criminal justice system. Her advocacy skills, passion, and sense of fairness have garnered her a reputation of an exceptional attorney and community leader.

Beyond the courtroom, Jones-Wright serves on the City of San Diego’s Commission on Gang Prevention and Intervention where she chairs the ad-hoc gang documentation committee. She is a volunteer attorney for the California Innocence Project and is an appointed member of the State Bar of California’s Council on Access and Fairness.

Jones-Wright is very active in the San Diego community at-large. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the David’s Harp Foundation, a local nonprofit that transforms the lives of “at-risk” and homeless youth through the power of music. She is a Mock Trial Team coach and a member of the Criminal Justice Program advisory board at Lincoln High School. In 2003, Geneviéve co-founded and served on the Board of Directors of ELITE (Educated Ladies Investing in Tomorrow’s Exemplars), a local program that prepared young girls for college.

Jones-Wright earned a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Media Communication from the University of San Francisco, a Juris Doctorate from Howard University School of Law, and a Master of Laws in Trial Advocacy from California Western School of Law.

Jones-Wright and her husband, Oliver, an active duty Hospital Corpsman with the United States Navy, live in the Encanto neighborhood of San Diego with their dog, Mellie.

Dave Myers – San Diego County Sheriff

I’ve heard from, and have met with, thousands of San Diego County residents. They are concerned about the San Diego Sheriff’s Department lack of responsiveness to community issues.

Issues such as the growing opioid drug problem, the failure to implement body worn cameras for deputies, lack of transparency on deaths and inmate violence in county jails, the appallingly low numbers of women and minorities represented on the Sheriff’s command staff, hundreds of rape kits going untested, shady meetings between the current Sheriff and a convicted foreign national. I have heard about the perceived biased policing with communities of color and LGBT residents, and the decline in policing activities due to the “Ferguson” effect.

These issues do more than degrade the quality of life for our residents, they make us less safe and contribute to the growing mistrust between officers and residents. They cost taxpayers more and deprive individuals of opportunity and hope.

Many brave women and men in uniform strive daily to do their best to serve and protect. However, with rising crime rates law enforcement agencies need to reimagine the fundamental task of keeping our communities safe. What our current state of affairs demonstrates is a failure on the part of our law enforcement leadership to own up to the shortcomings of policing today. They are not asking the difficult questions nor implementing proven strategies of building real community partnerships. All of which can keep our Deputies, and our communities, safe.

We must implement fair and impartial law enforcement procedures. We can leverage the tools of law enforcement and increase efforts to work with social service providers to assist with community issues such as mental illness treatment, long-term drug rehabilitation, homelessness, etc.

I’ve been with the Sheriff’s Department for 32 years and I believe the Department is in a state of stagnation due to a reactive and outdated policing culture.

I am running for Sheriff because I believe we can get there. It begins with a change in leadership, making the Sheriff’s Department more transparent with our communities, holding our law enforcement leaders accountable, and re-engaging with our residents to establish mutual respect and community trust.

I hope you’ll take the time to read more about my experiences and I look forward to conversations in the coming months about how we can work together.

Matt Strabone – San Diego County Assessor/Recorder/Clerk

Matt Strabone is a nonprofit and ethics attorney who owns his own law practice in San Diego. Matt gives legal and ethical advice to charities, other nonprofits, and public officials. His clients have included nationwide nonprofits dedicated to women’s health and local charities committed to assisting our veterans. One particular highlight of Matt’s career has been providing legal counsel to President Barack Obama.

Service to his community has always been a driving force in Matt’s life. Matt currently serves on the board of directors of the San Diego Leadership Alliance, a nonprofit that trains civic-minded young professionals in our region to create positive change, and the North Park Community Association, a civic organization dedicated to community improvement. Matt is also an appointed member of the City of San Diego Parking Advisory Board, a member of the Holiday Bowl Committee, a partner of the Truman National Security Project, and an active participant in Sierra Club’s San Diego chapter.

Matt received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Rochester and went on to earn his law degree from the University of Southern California. Prior to starting his own law practice, Matt was an attorney with Perkins Coie. In addition to practicing law, Matt is also a frequent commentator on issues of the day and has had editorial pieces published in U.S. News & World Report, The Hill, The Diplomat, the Georgetown Public Policy Review, and the Buffalo Public Interest Law Journal.