Second attempt at higher office, seeks to succeed Tim Grayson as part of effort to elect an equal number of women to the state legislature
By Allen D. Payton
On June 1st, Antioch District 4 Councilwoman Monica Wilson announced her campaign for State Assembly in District 15 which includes portions of Central and Eastern Contra Costa County. Current incumbent, Tim Grayson (D-Concord), is expected to run for the State Senate seat currently held by Steve Glazer who is termed out at the end of 2024. Although California state legislators can now serve a total of 12 years with a combination of time in each house, Glazer won a special election in 2011 to replace Mark DeSaulnier who was elected to Congress in 2015, midway through his term. If Glazer were re-elected for a third term, he would end up serving over 13 years.
First elected to the city council in 2012 then re-elected in 2016 for four-year terms, following the formation of council districts Wilson was re-elected again in 2020 for a two-year term garnering over 55% of the vote against two other candidates. This past year she was re-elected for another four-year term, but the support in her district had dropped to less than 37% in a field of four candidates, including fellow Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock. (See related article)
This is Democrat Wilson’s second run for higher office which included a failed attempt for District 3 County Supervisor in 2016 in which she placed fifth out of six candidates in the primary. (See related article)
The following press release was issued by her campaign:
Four-term Councilmember Monica Wilson announces her candidacy for State Assembly (AD15). Current Assemblymember Tim Grayson is widely expected to run for the Senate seat being vacated by Steve Glazer.
For the past two decades, Monica has served the people of Contra Costa County as a community organizer, high-profile advocate to end human trafficking, and leader in the fight for safe neighborhoods and healthy families.
“I am ready to take my results-oriented leadership to Sacramento – where I can do even more to maintain and improve the quality of life for our Contra Costa County communities and all Californians,” said Wilson. “Too many families are getting priced out due to skyrocketing cost of living and expensive housing. And creating effective solutions to homelessness is not only a regional, but statewide crisis. I have a proven track record of tackling today’s tough problems to provide the leadership every Californian needs.”
“These are all issues I have experienced myself,” she continued. “As your Assemblymember, I’ll fight to address pocketbook issues for the well-being of every Contra Costa County family and residents throughout the Golden State.”
Wilson announced her Assembly candidacy with endorsements from State Board of Equalization Member Sally Lieber, women and human rights advocate Christine Pelosi (Former Speaker of the House and Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi’s daughter) and local leaders including Concord Vice Mayor Edi Birsan and Brentwood Councilmember Jovita Mendoza.
“Monica has led efforts to protect our clean air and water for future generations,” said Board of Equalization Member Lieber. “Monica will lead the fight in Sacramento to make real progress toward the governor’s goal of dramatically cutting carbon pollution to reduce the risk of drought and wildfire.”
“It is more important than ever to elect women with proven track records of results to be our state policymakers. I am thrilled Councilmember Monica Wilson has answered the calls to run,” said Susannah Delano, Executive Director of Close the Gap California, (which is working for “gender parity in the state legislature by 2028”).
Assembly District 15 includes the cities of Antioch, Brentwood, Clayton, Concord, Martinez, Pittsburg, Pleasant Hill, a portion of Walnut Creek and the unincorporated communities of Bay Point and Pacheco.
ABOUT MONICA: Antioch Councilmember Monica Wilson champions police reform and safe neighborhoods; solutions to homelessness; expansion of mental health response teams; and bans on new liquor stores. Monica is a regional and statewide leader in the fight against human trafficking, serving as a program manager for a Bay Area nonprofit battling exploitation – and also worked closely with the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s office to create the County’s Human Trafficking Task Force.
REGIONAL LEADERSHIP & EXPERIENCE:
- Serving 4th term on Antioch City Council; first African American woman elected
- Vice Chair, Northern California Democratic Party Women’s Caucus; former Vice Chair, Democratic Party of Contra Costa County
- Board Member, Tri Delta Transit
- Staff Advisor, FemDems; Outreach Coordinator, Grateful Garment Project
- Program Manager, Human Trafficking nonprofit Love Never Fails
- Staff Member, Workforce Development Board of Contra Costa County
- San José – Evergreen Community College District and Mills College professional positions in Workforce Institute and Student Life divisions
According to the Priorities page on her campaign website, Wilson’s platform includes the issues of Cost of Living, Affordable Housing and Homelessness, Safe Neighborhoods and Schools and Climate Change.
Wilson’s main accomplishment as a member of the Antioch City Council was last year’s approval of the pilot program for a mental health response team to assist the police department, which is expected to begin operating this year. In addition, she championed a moratorium on gas and oil drilling in the city, and rejection of the franchise agreement renewal for the natural gas pipeline that runs through the city. That has resulted in an ongoing lawsuit by the operator of the pipeline. The councilwoman is now pushing for a moratorium on new gas stations in the city.
For the past two-and-a-half years Wilson has been the least controversial member of the council majority that has approved rental housing protections, a homeless motel for transitional housing, reversal of a $750,000 grant for six police officers to serve as School Resource Officers on Antioch middle and high school campuses, multiple cannabis dispensaries and businesses, a ban on the sale of certain tobacco products and the sale or transfer of tobacco retail businesses including to other family members, a gerrymandered council district map, hiring their own part-time secretaries, as well as the hiring of the current city manager, who she later voted to place on paid administrative leave pending at least two investigations.
According to her LinkedIn page, Wilson has held a total of six jobs since 2009. She is unmarried and has no children.
For more information about Wilson’s campaign visit www.MonicaforAssembly.com.