San Pablo City Council candidates vie for votes

October 24, 2018


Elizabeth Alvarado: Current San Pablo City Clerk Elizabeth Alvarado is running for city council for the first time. As city clerk, Alvarado has worked under the supervision of the city council and has been legally responsible for attending and
recording all city council meetings.
Her campaign has been focused on supporting growing businesses, building affordable housing while providing more public programs for seniors and children. She is a city representative for the San Pablo Childhood Obesity Prevention Task Force and is a board treasurer for the Economic Development Corporation. The Economic Development Corporation creates economic opportunities for residents of San Pablo and West Contra Costa by collaborating with community leaders, job partners and businesses. Alvarado will look to try to get one of the two seats that are up for grabs, as she faces current incumbents Paul Morris and Rita Xavier. In an effort to bring diversity to the city council, Alvarado has a tough task in trying to unseat the old guard of San Pablo.
Efrain Valdez

Rita Xavier: After holding leadership positions in many San Pablo civic organizations, Rita Xavier is running for one of two open seats for her first term on the San Pablo City Council. She will be running against four-term council member Paul Morris and city clerk Elizabeth Pabon-Alvarado. Xavier said she believes the city should stick to its conservative budgeting  plan and is an advocate for reducing crime. Currently, she is chairwoman of the city’s Planning Commission and is a member of the city Advisory Committee on Aging and Senior Center Advisory Board. Xavier also serves on the Hazardous Materials Commission and the Transportation Authority Paratransit Coordinating Council. She was born and raised in New York and served as an aide to a United States senator from 1979-1981 in Buffalo, New York.
Alex Kwasniza

Paul Morris: Paul V. Morris is one of three candidates running for two San Pablo City Council seats on Nov. 6. He is an incumbent. He was born in Chicago and has been a resident of San Pablo since 1996. He is a property consultant and previously operated his own advertising agency with offices in Chicago and Toronto. Morris has served the city of San Pablo for 20 years. He worked four years on the planning commission and has served 16 years on the city council. Morris campaigned for Measure K in 2014, which provided San Pablo with an Emergency Medical Service squad to enhance Fire Station 70. He also wants to prioritize programs and activities that provide recreational activities and services to seniors and youth, through the city’s Community Services Department. In 2014, Morris led an entourage of 27 delegates to the National Civic League’s “All America City” conference in Denver, where San Pablo was one of 25 finalist cities for the award. Since then, Morris and his team have helped build a new community center, opened a new library, are currently building a new city hall and plan to build a new police training facility. “I am pleased to be a part of the transformation of San Pablo from one of the most violent cities in the Bay Area, per capita, to one of the safest cities in the Bay Area today.”
Cindy Pantoja


Viviana Toledo, treasurer: Running for re-election as San Pablo city treasurer, Viviana Toledo has more than 22 years of experience in the fields of accounting, payroll and administrative services. Toledo has a bachelor of science in business and associate degrees in applied arts and accounting. She also has been a notary public in California since 2002. Her community involvement includes serving as a member of San Pablo Adopt-a-Family, treasurer of the San Pablo-Manzanillo Sister City Committee and fiscal agent for the Cinco de Mayo Parade since 2014. Toledo has been San Pablo’s city treasurer since October 2010 and is fluent in both the English and Spanish languages.

Michael Santone

Patricia Ponce, city clerk: Patricia Ponce is running for San Pablo city clerk in the Nov. 6
election. The city clerk is the local official who administers democratic processes such as elections, access to city records and all legislative actions ensuring transparency to the public. According to, Ponce believes she is a good candidate for city clerk because she has integrity and demonstrates sound moral and ethical principles. Ponce said, “As a city clerk, I will be a public representative for the interest of San Pablo’s citizens.” She firmly believes in the importance of keeping public records accessible and having transparency. Currently, Ponce holds a management position as accounting supervisor with the West Contra Costa Unified School District. “I am an independent thinker with strong skills and determination to get things done,” Ponce said. She has a degree in health and human services and has been a San Pablo resident for 30 years.
Jessica Suico




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