Sara Lashanlo -- a finalist in the appointment process for the District 2 City Council seat that ultimately went to Mark Armstrong in 2021 -- has launched a campaign for election to win a full term in the seat this November.
"I'm running because I'm inspired by the safe, diverse and compassionate city that is San Ramon, and the climate-conscious, equitably growing and modern city that we can be," Lashanlo said on her campaign site.
Lashanlo was among the finalists selected from a 15-applicant pool seeking appointment to the District 2 seat in 2021, when it was vacated upon then-councilmember Dave Hudson's election as mayor.
Currently a member of the city's Innovation and Technology Advisory Committee, Lashanlo got her start working with the city as a recreation leader with the parks department during her summers as a student at California High School, from which she graduated from in 2013. She currently works at a medical device startup, having earned a mechanical engineering degree from California Polytechnic State University.
"I've experienced San Ramon as a student, attending the local high school, frequenting the parks and eateries, and working as a Recreation Leader for Camp Central," Lashanlo said on her campaign page. "I've also experienced San Ramon as a different kind of community member: a working professional, commuter, library-goer, nature lover, grocery shopper, City Center patron."
Lashanlo is running on a platform that emphasizes climate action, technology and innovation, community safety and conscious growth. She also points to local democracy as a priority, and supports considering rank-choice voting, term limits for councilmembers and enhanced education about local governments and elections.
"A healthy democracy means empowered individuals, elected representatives who prioritize their constituents rather than their own interests, and constant access to education and opportunities," Lashanlo said.
So far, Lashanlo is the only challenger to file for candidacy for District 2, with Armstrong also launching a re-election bid for the seat. The deadline to file for candidacy is this Friday (Aug.12) at 5 p.m.
Hudson, who was elected at-large to the council in 2018, had his position effectively assigned to District 2 during the city's districting process. After city voters elevated Hudson to mayor in 2020 in the middle of his council term, Armstrong was then appointed by sitting councilmembers at the time to serve through 2022 representing District 2.
Despite not ultimately being selected for the seat last year, Lashanlo said, "It was a fantastic experience and only propelled me more deeply into local efforts."
More information on Lashanlo's campaign is available at saraforcouncil.com.