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Jennifer Skidgel-Clarke

Candidate - North Monterey County School Board

Jennifer is the Vice President of Food Safety and Regulatory Compliance for Steinbeck Country Produce. Jennifer is a licensed Pest Control Advisor and Certified Crop Advisor who has worked in Pesticide Use Enforcement for the Monterey County Ag Commissioner and as a Pest Control Advisor for Salinas Valley growers.

Jennifer is a current Board Member of Monterey County Farm Bureau and past President of the Salinas Valley Chapter of California Women for Agriculture (CWA). She has been actively involved in the Ag community through the Monterey County Farm Bureau, Grower-Shipper Association of Central California, Monterey Bay Chapter of California Association of Pest Control Advisors (CAPCA), and the Salinas Valley Chapter of California Woman for Agriculture (CWA). She has also been the chair of CWA’s scholarship committee for the past several years.

Jeanne Byrne

Candidate - Monterey Peninsula Water Management District Area 4

Jeanne Byrne is a former mayor of Pacific Grove and a FAIA Architect.  Jeanne graduated from California State Polytechnic University at San Luis Obispo with a bachelor’s degree in architecture. She then spent a graduate year in Florence, Italy. As mayor of Pacific Grove from 1992-1994, Byrne was crucial in bringing the cities of Pacific Grove and Carmel onto the governance Board of the Fort Ord Reuse Authority. She has been active on Pacific Grove’s Building Standards Committee and was Chair of Pacific Grove’s Architectural Review Committee. She continues to be a leader in the American Institute of Architects, Rotary Club, Pacific Grove Downtown Business Improvement District and Downtown Improvement Committee. She is to her husband of 32 years, Ray and they have one son, Loren.

Bob Brower

Incumbent - Monterey Peninsula Water Management District Area 5

Bob has had a long history of community service on the Monterey Peninsula.  In 1984, the Directors of the Hospice of the Monterey Peninsula requested he become a member of the Board.  Soon afterward, he became Chair.  Bob participated in the expansion and relocation of the Hospice to the Old Capital Tract in Monterey.  He was appointed by the Board of Supervisors to the Monterey County Workforce Investment Board. In addition, He serves as a Trustee of the Monterey Wine Education foundation.

Brian Higgins
Candidate - Monterey County Board of Education Area 4

  • Occupation: Businessman/Foundation VP

  • Salinas Chamber of Commerce + Board, 2009

  • Salinas Junior Chamber of Commerce (Jaycees) + President, 2009

  • Salinas Recreation and Parks Commission + Chair, 2010

  • MontereyCounty Fair Heritage Foundation + Chair, 2011

  • Salinas Redistricting Commission, 2011

  • Salinas Taxpayers Association + Board, 2011

  • We must bring innovation and 21st century learning to our classrooms.

  • It is imperative that we manage the resources of the Monterey County Office of Education effectively and efficiently, keeping fiscally prudent.

  • Having local control of our school districts is critical for success.

Manuel Osorio
Candidate - Hartnell Community College District Area 1

My name is Manuel Osorio. My wife, Susan, and I have lived in Prunedale for the last 9 years. I was born and raised in Watsonville in a family of 10. While attending public school, I worked in the fields throughout the Pajaro Valley. After high school graduation, I served in the Air Force and returned home after being stationed in Vietnam.

My experience as a community college student and college employee of 34 years will compliment the skills and experience of the existing Board of Trustees. Hartnell College has established itself as a leading higher education institution that today finds itself faced with serious fiscal and economic challenges. I believe that I am qualified to assist the College in addressing these challenges, maintaining its integrity and, at the same time, continually remaining responsive to the multiple needs of our community citizens. I would be honored to serve you as the next District 1, Trustee on the Hartnell Community College Board.

Johnny Gray

Candidate - Hartnell Community College District Area 2

As a Hartnell alumnus and California native, I am proud to run for the Hartnell Board of Trustees. I am excited by the opportunity to give back to my community in this capacity, and I hope that I can count on your support during this election.

With over twenty years of business experience, two degrees from the University of San Francisco and years of community service focused on children and education, I believe that I can bring the dedication, strength, and enthusiasm that Hartnell deserves. I have seen first-hand the importance a secondary education can have on an individual, the opportunities it can provide, and the impact it ultimately makes on a community. With dramatic cuts to the University of California and California State University systems, colleges like Hartnell play an even more vital role in our communities, and we must put our students first.

Like many community colleges, Hartnell is facing difficult challenges. The district continues to struggle with budget cuts, maintaining critical services and programs, while ensuring the success of the students. In order to build an academic atmosphere which grants students the confidence and tools to further their education or their careers, we must work together. I believe that as a Hartnell College Trustee, I can help make this a reality for both current and prospective students.

Elia Gonzales-Castro
Incumbent - Hartnell Community College Board Area 5

A longtime resident of Salinas, my husband and I have sent two children to college and understand the difficulties that our families face. I want to work hard with our community to ensure that anyone who seeks and education can have that opportunity to pursue their dream.


I’m journalist graduated from the Universidad Autonoma de Mexico and I work as a parent educator for the Alisal Union School District. In addition, I also serve as board member for both the Alisal Center for the Fine Arts and the Alisal Education Foundation.


As a proud parent of two college students and health educator of this community, I understand the struggles to raise a family here. Just like you, I want to ensure that we have the best education services for our children. Our high school graduates face many challenges and difficult decisions with their education. Hartnell College also faces many challenges with their budget, the search for a new Superintendent/President, and accreditation just to name a few.


I want to provide leadership so that our students young and old can continue their studies here in our community college. This requires Leadership and Knowledge of our community together with a Common Sense Approach.

Kathryn Ramirez

Incumbent - Salinas Union High School District Area 4

Kathryn Ramirez began her career in education as a teacher at a local College in Salinas where she first realized the need to improve public schools for students. This need, coupled with her desire to help students achieve, fueled her decision to run for public office. In November 2003, Ramirez began her public service career as a Trustee for the Salinas Union High School District. Ramirez is currently pursuing a Masters of Public Administration at Golden Gate University.

She has served as a member of the Salinas Union High School District’s Education Foundation Board, Sunrise House Board, California State University Alumni Association Board, Monterey County Citizen’s Corp Council, United Way of Monterey County’s Council of Executives, Monterey County SELPA Board (Special Education Local Plan Areas) and California Latino School Board Association Board. Ramirez is currently the regions Delegate to the California School Board Association (CSBA) and CSBA’s Governmental Relations Chair for Assembly Member Anna Caballero.

Tom Mancini
Incumbent - Seaside City Council

Mr. Mancini was first elected to the Seaside Council Member in November 1994 and has been re-elected in 1998, 2002 and 2006. Mayor Smith appointed Mr. Mancini as Mayor Pro Tem from 1999 to 2001. Mr. Mancini represents the City of Seaside on the Fort Ord Reuse Authority (FORA), Monterey Salinas Transit (MST).


He has also served on the Monterey Regional Waste Management (MRWMB) and the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG) boards.


Mr. Mancini is only one of three council members in the Monterey Bay Division League of California Cities (covering Monterey, Santa Cruz, and San Benito counties) to graduate from the League of California Cities’ Leadership Academy.

Mr. Mancini and his wife have been involved over the years with Young Life, Boy & Girl Scouts, Little Leagues (both football and baseball) and those other parental activities normally associated with raising teenage children.

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