My name is James Coleman. I grew up in the neighborhood of Avalon Park with my mother and father, and I am running to represent District 4 in South San Francisco’s City Council. For as long as I can remember, I have cared deeply about our community and knew that I wanted to spend my life in service to our shared home in South City. As a lifelong resident, I attended Ponderosa Elementary, Alta Loma Middle School, and South San Francisco High School. After graduating, I went on to study Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology as well as Government at Harvard University, and now I hope to come back to build my life in the Bay Area.
For years, I have worked with the community to help make our political system work for all of us from the Greater Boston area to back home here in the Bay. In particular, I was a fellow with the Alliance for Climate Education, an advocate with Fossil Fuel Divest Harvard, and a cofounder of the Harvard Undergraduates for Environmental Justice. I have worked on campaigns advocating for safe and equitable working conditions for essential workers at Harvard, and have advocated for increasing resources for the homeless community in Cambridge. In addition to this, I have interned at the biotech company Bayer, conducted neuroscience research at Massachusetts General Hospital, and served as a Director for TEDxHarvardCollege. I now hope to be able to use the experience and education I gained at Harvard to come back home and help my community address some of these same issues.
We are currently facing an unprecedented moment in time. Healthcare costs are rising, a pandemic runs rampant, the nation is suffering from the murder of George Floyd, and we are facing a looming eviction and unemployment crisis that dwarfs that of the Great Depression, all while the need to address climate change and rising costs of living remains ever so urgent. Now more than ever, we need politicians that will represent and fight for the people.
My love for the South City community and the necessity for courage in the City’s leadership is what inspired me to run for City Council. I promise that I will prioritize honesty, transparency, and accessibility with the community I represent. I will put forth legislation in favor of curbing climate change, improving public safety, encouraging public and affordable housing, fostering a quality education, investing in our community’s infrastructure, and creating a safe and welcome environment for all. I will do my own research with each ordinance and piece of legislation to ensure that I make the best decisions for the community, and not those that are politically expedient.
I am launching my campaign for South San Francisco City Council. On this campaign, we will not be accepting any money from private developers, fossil fuel companies, or corporations. My priority is to remain accountable to the residents of the South City community, and not special interests. Growing up in South City shaped the person that I am today, and I hope to pay it forward by doing everything in my power to uplift the community.
Politics is about electing good people who will listen to the community and represent the will of the people. But in addition to that, it is also about envisioning what we as a community can achieve, what we can build and create together, what progress can be made through recognizing the many similarities that unite us rather than separate us, and the many conversations we will have along the way.