Adrian Fontes, Candidate for Maricopa County Recorder

Adrian is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps, having served on active duty from 1992 to 1996, and was nominated for a meritorious commission.

His service to our country taught him the importance of dedication, discipline, and sacrifice to forcefully fight for the American dream. After leaving active duty, Adrian received his Bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University before continuing on to the Sturm College of Law at the University of Denver.

Since graduating from law school, Adrian has spent his career advocating for justice and fighting for those who are disadvantaged — first as a prosecutor with the Denver District Attorney and then for the Maricopa County Attorney’s office and the Arizona Attorney General’s office before entering private practice.

As County Recorder, he has worked to bring a renewed energy and vision to the office, with the goal of rebuilding public trust in the election system in Maricopa County. He has focused on the voters’ experience, accountability, and security. Adrian will continue to work to make sure that every Maricopa County citizen who is eligible to vote is able to vote, whether at their kitchen table completing their early ballot or at the booth on Election Day — and that all of their ballots are counted.

Paul Penzone, Candidate for Maricopa County Sheriff

Julie Gunnigle, Candidate for Maricopa County Attorney

Julie Gunnigle was born and raised in Maricopa County and currently lives a mile from the school that she attended growing up.  Julie is running for Maricopa County Attorney because she believes the people of Maricopa County deserve a criminal justice system that is smart, fair and tough. 

She graduated from the University of Notre Dame Law School, cum laude. After law school, Julie went on to serve as Assistant State’s Attorney in Cook County, Illinois where she prosecuted financial crime and public corruption. 

 Julie’s plan as County Attorney is clear:

  • Be tough on violent criminals who prey on women, children, and the elderly

  • Be smart with reforms so we can create real sentencing reform, end cash bail, have bond reforms, and eliminate private prisons 

  • Be fair to our residents by creating effective diversion programs for young adults and children, veterans with mental health issues, and end prosecution of low-level marijuana offenses

Robert McWhirter, Candidate for Maricopa County Attorney

Bob McWhirter knows we need a Maricopa County Attorney committed to ending mass incarceration with the experience to make us safer from crime, respect victims’ rights, and make the tough choices.

For over 30 years Bob has fought to end mass incarceration.  More than any other candidate, Bob has seen how mass incarceration not only destroys families but makes us no safer from crime.  He has fought to end the criminalization of addiction and mental illness and will do so as Maricopa County Attorney.

Bob has stood for criminal justice reform at the institution level.  He helped start The Justice Project and serves on its Advisory Board.  He served on the State Board of the ACLU of Arizona for over a decade and on the Catholic Charities Board where he was instrumental in starting Dignity Diversion, a program to assist people coming out of prostitution as an alternative to incarceration.  He continues to give countless pro-bono hours to The Black Mothers Forum to end the school-to-prison pipeline that unjustly affects our children of color.

Bob is the only candidate with significant management experience in criminal justice reform, crucial to end mass incarceration.  Being the only candidate fluent in Spanish, Bob worked extensively in Latin American including administering an $11.2 million USAID contract in El Salvador to reform the justice system.  This involved ending mass pretrial incarceration, training prosecutors, and developing victim’s rights programs.

Bob recognizes the job of the County Attorney is to make people safer from crime. Ending mass incarceration while focusing on victim’s rights is the way to do this. But there remain violent people who need to go to prison.  The Maricopa County attorney’s office is the largest law firm of criminal trial attorneys in Arizona and needs to be the best.  Bob is the only candidate with significant trial experience who can lead such an office.  He has tried countless cases including the death penalty and murder cases and has argued over 25 times in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.  He spends 100s of hours every year to train Arizona prosecutors in constitutional and criminal law.

Over 10 years ago, Bob was at the forefront of the legal fight against Joe Arpaio and wrote the bar complaint that finally got County Attorney Andrew Thomas disbarred.  He knew then the struggle was not over.  Bob McWhirter will end the wake of their regime to achieve real criminal justice reform.

Will Knight, Candidate for Maricopa County Attorney

Will Knight is a Latino immigrant and an experienced attorney with a background in prosecution, criminal defense, and civil rights litigation. Will a dedicated public servant and community advocate, having served on the Commissions on Access to Justice and Minorities in the Judiciary for years, and he is a published scholar in the field of prosecutorial ethics. Will also teaches evidence and business law as an adjunct at his alma mater, ASU Law.

Will is deeply, and personally, aware of how criminal actors and the carceral state can blindly and irreparably alter the lives of everyday Americans. That is why he is running for Maricopa County Attorney on a platform of criminal justice reform. Will’s priorities are:

  • End mass incarceration and the school-to-prison pipeline by prioritizing violent crime prosecution and investing the hundreds of millions of dollars we save in teachers and schools.
  • Repair relationships between communities of color and law enforcement by swiftly and fairly addressing official misconduct and implementing structural changes to overcome implicit bias.
  • Restore confidence in the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office by collaborating with stakeholders to achieve full transparency and restoring discretion to prosecutors on the front lines.

Jeanne Casteen, Candidate for Maricopa County Schools Superintendent

Jeanne Casteen is a dedicated and passionate educator from Phoenix, Arizona. Born in Illinois to two hard-working United Auto Workers, Jeanne moved to Arizona in 1991. She has watched as the state of Raul Castro and Rose Mofford has become a national spectacle for bad policies and hyper-partisan politics. Jeanne understands the importance of access to accessible, affordable education. Her children and stepchildren are the products of Arizona schools, and she’s attended several junior colleges and a state university herself.

After graduating from ASU (summa cum laude), she received a Masters in Secondary Education in 2010 from ASU. Seeing how policies- often made by those completely disconnected from education- had real consequences for her students, Jeanne decided to run for the Creighton School District (CSD) Governing Board in 2012 and currently serves as President of the board. Jeanne firmly believes that a child’s zip code should not determine their access to opportunity.

Aaron Connor, Candidate for Maricopa County Assessor

For over 15 years, Aaron Connor has been working in the mortgage industry. He has worked in underwriting, loan processing, title review, as a loan officer, a business analyst, and systems administrator.  He now understands the entire life-cycle of the mortgage industry to find efficiencies and ensure the consumers investments are maximized.

The impact that Aaron will make:

  1. Improve technology to enhance the Maricopa County Property Owners experience
  2. Fairly and accurately assess property values while providing excellent customer service
  3. Enhance accountability and transparency to the office

Dan Toporek, Candidate for Maricopa County Treasurer

Dan Toporek spent the last 34 years honorably serving our Nation as a Marine and Army Attack Pilot, and now he seeks to continue his service as Treasurer of Maricopa County.  As your Treasurer, Dan will bring the same dedication to honorable service as he did when he was flying combat missions overseas or managing the resources necessary to keep our Nation safe.

The office of County Treasurer is an office of special trust. The Treasurer must faithfully collect the funds needed to pay for the services provided by our County, distribute those funds as directed by the County Board of Supervisors, and invest and protect those funds until needed. Dan promises to keep that trust, find innovative ways to invest the taxpayers money, and to ensure the office of the County Treasurer treats all people with respect, fairness and equality.

Jevin Hodge, Candidate for Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, District 1

I am running to be a true advocate for Maricopa County and all of its 4.4 million residents. I decided to run because our community deserves a seat at the table and have their voices heard. 

Together, we will be a part of the democratic process. 

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors oversees a $2.5 billion budget. This is the most important election you’ve never heard of. I’m here to step up and lead to make sure our sewers get cleaned, our roads remain paved, that we have fair and transparent elections and a public transportation system that meets the needs of our most vulnerable populations, and that our county government works for the people – not against them. 

I will work to ensure responsive leadership, a collaboration between government, the community and business, and innovation to spur job creation, economic development, and affordable housing. 

Together, we can make history.

Deedra Abboud, Candidate for Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, District 2

Deedra Abboud lives her values of inclusivity and diversity of people and opinions on a daily basis, sharing information freely and publicly. She is reasonable but decisive, always willing to listen and discuss perspectives as well as explain how she’s come to a particular conclusion. 

Originally from Arkansas, Deedra moved to Arizona in 1998, serving as civil rights and social justice advocate for more than 15 years, while also becoming a small business owner and attorney in Scottsdale.

Her work as a business owner and attorney gives her insight on fiscal responsibility as well as community concerns around due process and potential lawsuits so that such matters can be dealt with before costing Maricopa County taxpayers millions of dollars in legal fees, fines, and judgments as we’ve experienced every year over the past eight years or more.

Transparency, Accountability, and Accessibility are the foundation of her values for service to the Maricopa County and Arizona communities.

Whitney Walker, Candidate for Maricopa County Supervisor District 3

Whitney is an advocate, policymaker, and visionary who believes everyone should have equal access and opportunity to define their American Dream. As a natural-born advocate for social justice and equity, Whitney’s professional life mirrors her commitment to service and lifts the voices of those in her community. She has spent her career advocating for sustainable policy solutions on behalf domestic and sexual violence survivors and their families. She has a proven record working with advocates to close systematic gaps to end cycles of violence and poverty as a committee member on the Impact of Domestic Violence and the Courts for the State of Arizona and by working directly with policymakers to create legislative change.

Whitney is passionate about elevating the voices of marginalized communities and remains steadfast in building a Maricopa County that thrives for all of us. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a Juris Doctor Degree. Whitney is running to be District 3’s Supervisor to uphold the mission of providing necessary public services so that every person and every family can enjoy living in a healthy and safe community. Whitney is committed to ensuring that everyone prospers regardless of their race, color, ability, legal status, who they love or, their gender expression. 

Steve Gallardo, Candidate for Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, District 5

Maricopa County Supervisor Steve Gallardo was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona.  As a fourth-generation Arizonan, Steve has spent all of his life in the West Valley, a graduate of Trevor Browne High School.  Gallardo has devoted his adult life to public service at the local, county and state levels. In 2002, Supervisor Gallardo was elected to the State House of Representatives in a new legislative district covering the Southwest Valley. Steve spent 10 years at the Arizona State Legislature both in the House and the Senate.  During his term as State Representative, Senator Gallardo served as the House Minority Whip and in 2013 was selected to be Senate Democratic Whip.

Gallardo also has served on both the Cartwright Elementary Governing Board and is a current member of the Phoenix Union High School Board.

Gallardo’s priorities as a Maricopa County Board of Supervisors:  Affordable Housing, with emphasis on the Homeless Population, Youth Leadership Development, and Economic Development in the Western portion of the County.

Steve currently sits on the Ryan White Planning Council and the Valley Metro Regional Transportation Advisory Board.  Supervisor Gallardo is also the 2nd vice-chair of the County Supervisors’ Association.

Dr. Linda Thor, Candidate for Maricopa Community College District Govering Board, At-Large

Elected to the Maricopa Community College District Governing Board in 2016, Dr. Linda M. Thor previously worked in community colleges for 41 years, 29 years as a chief executive officer.  Dr. Thor is President Emeritus of Rio Salado College in Tempe, Arizona, where she served for nearly 20 years.

Dr. Thor is also Chancellor Emeritus of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District in California’s Silicon Valley, a post she held for 5 ½ years.

Prior to becoming Rio Salado’s president in 1990, Dr. Thor was president of West Los Angeles College in Culver City, California. Dr. Thor’s appointment as West Los Angeles College president in 1986 followed a successful tenure as senior director of occupational and technical education for the Los Angeles Community College District.  Earlier she served the L.A. District as director of high technology centers and services and director of communications services.

Dr. Tom Nerini, Candidate for Maricopa Community College District Governing Board, District 5

Growing up in south Phoenix and graduating from Carl Hayden High School, MCCCD was the only opportunity Tom Nerini had to pursue higher education.  As a Latino and the son of former farmworkers, he knows first-hand the incredibly transformable power of the community colleges.  Since graduating from college Tom had dedicated his career to helping students access and thrive in college. For more than 20 years he worked as a college administrator in Arizona, New York, and Washington serving at-risk and underrepresented students.  For the past decade, he has worked as a school counselor helping students to prepare for college and beyond.

Tom’s education, background, and experience offer him a uniquely qualified insight into the college experience. As a student affairs professional, he understands student issues, motivation, and enrollment management.  He has designed and implemented a number of highly successful programs designed to support the success of low-income, first-generation, underrepresented students.  As a school counselor, he has a detailed understanding of the admission, enrollment, financial aid, and academic advising at MCCCD.  As the counselor at Phoenix Union’s Franklin Police and Fire High School, he has helped hundreds of students navigate the college process.  He has been instrumental in expanding college opportunities throughout the Phoenix Union District through his work with early college programs such as ACE (Achieving a College Education) Hoop of Learning, CLEP Testing, and Dual Enrollment.  He has worked on several committees and initiatives such as Thriving Together, Post-secondary Access Taskforce, DACA/Undocumented Student Opportunities Committee, and the Phoenix Union/MCCCD committees on Dual Enrollment.  Working with Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education through the Arizona College Access Network Tom helped to design curriculum and teach classes to help school counselors better understand the college-going process.  For his efforts, he was awarded the 2020 Phoenix Union High School District Counselor of the Year.

In 2008 Tom literally wrote the book on undocumented students in higher education.  His doctoral dissertation, Learning from the Shadows was the first comprehensive exploration of the issues and impacts of undocumented students pursuing higher education.  Recognized as an expert on the topic Tom has been invited to present at national conferences across the country, such as the National Association for College Admission Counseling and the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.

Tom’s commitment to MCCCD, the colleges, the students, and the faculty and staff who support them comes not just from an academic understanding of the issues but rather from his lived, personal experience.   As a graduate of Mesa Community College, he has a first-hand understanding of the power of community college.  

A lifelong educator and a proud member of AEA he appreciates and values the strength of shared governance the voice of the faculty and staff who support our students.  He understands that education is not just an opportunity, but a right and that right must be preserved with high quality and affordable education, that only the community colleges can provide.

Charlene Tarver, Candidate for Maricopa Community College District Governing Board, District 5

As adjunct faculty at Maricopa County Community Colleges Tarver knows first-hand the challenges in the classroom and what it takes for students and faculty to be successful at the collegiate level.  Charlene began adjunct teaching at Phoenix College of Law in 2010 and in 2017 started teaching summer and evening business and Year Up! classes (for DACA, immigrant, refugee, and minority students) at Gateway Community College. 

Having grown up in poverty herself, Tarver understands the challenges and benefits of a community college education and saw the impact it had on her parents and family.  Her father had a 3rd-grade education and took night classes at the community college to run a small family business and her mother studied nursing at the community college when she was 14. Upon graduating from high school, Tarver earned her Bachelor’s degree from NYU, a JD from the University at Buffalo School of Law, and her LL.M. in Tax and CEBS from Georgetown Law.  Much of her education was funded and/or influenced by HEOP and upward bound programs designed to support first-generation, low income and marginalized students. 

In addition to teaching in the classroom, Tarver has practiced criminal, civil rights and tax law and has served on several boards and commissions here in Maricopa County including the Parks and Recreation Board, Phoenix IDA, the Phoenix Pension Reform Task Force, and MCSO Sheriff Paul Penzone’s Advisory Board.  Tarver is a member of Valley Leadership, a fellow of Leading for Change and the Flinn Brown Civic Leadership Academy, and a board member at Georgetown University where she addresses equity issues impacting minority staff, faculty, and students university-wide.

Tarver brings a depth of diverse policy, legal, and administrative experience to the Maricopa County Community Colleges governing board and a passion for all students, faculty, staff and community.  Once elected, Tarver will promote community colleges as a first choice; advocate for the State’s financial re-investment in MCCCD; ensure tuition and fees remain low-cost to no-cost; increase student employment outcomes through internship and apprenticeships; encourage equity for low-income, marginalized, immigrant, and DACA communities; and champion academic and employment pathways for front line workers and disconnected youth. Tarver is a proponent of fiscal responsibility, greater infrastructure and technology advancements system-wide, and collective branding and community outreach across all ten campuses. Tarver is a tireless advocate for equity and inclusion for all

Lupe Contreras, LD 19 Candidate for Arizona State Senate

Brian Whitman, LD21 Candidate for Arizona State Senate

Jana Lynn Granillo, LD26 Candidate for Arizona State Senate

Rebecca Rios, LD27 Candidate for Arizona State Senate

Reginald Bolding, LD27 Candidate for Arizona State House of Representatives

Diego Rodriguez, LD27 Candidate for Arizona State House of Representatives

Catherine Miranda, LD27 Candidate for Arizona State House of Representatives

Anna Tovar, Candidate for Arizona Corporation Commission

Anna Tovar and her husband have been married for over 20 years and have two wonderful sons. She is proud of her roots in Tolleson, Arizona, proud to be a product of the public school system and proud to have given back as a teacher, mentor, and leader in her community.

Anna was a teacher for five years for the Tolleson Elementary School District, served on the Tolleson City Council for seven and a half years, and was Vice Mayor for two years until she joined the House of Representatives and served as Minority Whip. In 2013, she entered the Senate where she served as the District 19 representative advocating for Avondale, Tolleson, West Phoenix and the entire state. 

As Senator Tovar, she developed a well-earned reputation as a legislator who fought for the dignity of underserved people. In 2011, she championed the effort to restore funding for nearly 100 patients on the bone marrow transplant list, saving many lives. 

Throughout her time at the state, she knew one day she would return to her hometown Tolleson to resume her service as a local elected official. In 2016, Anna was elected as Mayor of Tolleson, Arizona. She is the first female to hold this prestigious office.

During her time as Mayor, Anna has worked to ensure all of Tolleson’s residents have an opportunity for quality education and good-paying jobs. She has supported local businesses and sustainable economic development as a principal cornerstone of her governance. and focused on developing regional partnerships and collaborating with local and state elected officials to advocate for all residents. 

It’s why she is now running for the Arizona Corporation Commission. She believes that far too often, many of the Corporation Commissioners have forgotten about the very people they were elected to serve: the consumers of Arizona. Anna wants to restore transparency and integrity to the Corporation Commission and that’s why she is asking for your vote in 2020.

Bill Mundell, Candidate for Arizona Corporation Commission

Bill was raised in a military family and lived on numerous military bases during his childhood. He went to high school in Arizona and graduated from ASU with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. Bill then graduated from law school at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas.
 
Bill has a long history of public service in Arizona. After fighting corruption in Chandler, Bill was 27 when he was appointed the Presiding Judge of the Chandler Municipal Court, where he served for six years.
 
Bill next served in the Arizona House of Representatives for six years and was Chair of the Environment Committee. During his tenure, Bill wrote numerous laws protecting Arizona’s environment, including the state’s first recycling law, a historic law preventing Arizona from becoming the nation’s dumping ground for hazardous waste and laws protecting our native plants, our rivers, and the Phoenix Mountains Preserves.
 
While a legislator, Bill also wrote laws protecting victims of domestic violence and a law that increased the penalties for crimes against children.
 
Bill continued his public service as a Commissioner on the Corporation Commission for nine years (1999 to 2009). In 2001, when he was Chair, Arizona was one of the first states to require its utilities to generate a percentage of their electricity from renewable sources, such as solar and wind. In 2006, he co-authored the current renewable energy requirement in Arizona, the REST Rules. These rules substantially increased the required renewable energy percentage.
 
Bill is married with two daughters. His wife, Barbara, was the first woman and the first Latina Presiding Judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court.

Shea Stanfield, Candidate for Arizona Corporation Commission

Phoenix, Arizona became my home in 1957 with my dad’s Federal job transfer, with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as an epidemic investigator. My mother was a high school English teacher and community activist.

Needless to say, I grew up with an understanding life was about service to others through health care and education. I attended Arizona State University earning both a Bachelor’s and Masters in Education. My 40-year teaching/counseling career culminated in June 2013.

During those years I raised two sons, worked with the local teachers’ union, served on the Cave Creek Town Council, and sat on numerous educational and environmental boards.

I am running for the Arizona Corporation Commission, as a Clean Elections candidate. My objective is Building a Sustainable Future for Arizona, specifically focusing on renewable energy sources that will improve air quality, water conservation and grow eco-friendly/sustainable businesses.

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