Oakland, CA — On August 27, 2020, the first six Redistricting Commissioners selected nine Oakland residents to join the Commission. Those selected include: Tracy McKnight (District 1); Shirley Gee (District 2); Amber Blackwell (District 3); Paul Marshall (District 4); Masoud “Matt” Hamidi (District 5); Martha Hernandez (District 6); Daniel Chesmore (District 6); Gloria Crowell (District 7); and Tejal Shah (District 7).
The first six Commissioners were announced on July 22, 2020, after their names were randomly drawn by Acting City Clerk Asha Reed from a 30-person applicant pool. They were tasked with selecting seven additional voting members and two alternate members from the remaining applicant list. The first six Commissioners include: Jan Stevens (District 1); Benjie Achtenberg (District 2); Lilibeth Gangas (District 3); Diana Miller (District 4); Stephanie Goode (District 5); and Mary Velasco (District 6).
All members were vetted through a three-person Screening Panel prior to their selection to the Redistricting Commission. The Redistricting Commission is comprised of 13-voting members and two alternate members, with Commissioners Chesmore and Hamidi serving as the alternate members. The alternate members will actively and fully participate in the Commission’s work. The Commissioners are tasked with setting new district boundaries for City Council and School Board of Directors districts upon conclusion of the 2020 U.S. Census.
“We prioritized geographic location, racial, ethnic and economic diversity as we reviewed the applicant pool and thoughtfully made our selections,” Commissioner Gangas said. “We strived to represent the dynamic demographic characteristics of Oakland based on the applicant pool.”
“Our job is to ensure a fair and equitable process in determining the new district boundaries for Oakland,” Commissioner Velasco said. “We have Commissioners of different backgrounds and experiences from across Oakland, and who all indicated a willingness to set aside our own self interests in accomplishing our work.”
“We encourage residents, groups, and organizations to get involved in our work,” Commissioner Stevens said. “As a new Commission, we want the community to know of the work we are doing and will strive to make the redistricting process as open and transparent as possible.”
The Redistricting Commission will begin its work in the fall of 2020 and will approve the new district boundaries by December 31, 2021. The Commissioners are eligible to serve one term, which concludes when the final district maps are approved.
For additional information on the Redistricting Commission, or to receive email notifications on the Commission’s work, visit: www.oaklandca.gov/redistricting and select the ‘Register’ icon.