Join us for VCWPC’s Summer
Garden Party Fundraiser

Growing our own!

Sunday, August 11, 2013
1 to 4 p.m.
At the home of Gail Weller Brown and Jerry Brown
2101 Doral Court, Oxnard 93036

Honoring Irma J. Lopez, Oxnard’s former first lady, community and women’s activist and VCWPC’s cherished leader

Irma is a spectacular role model of a woman who never stops striving to improve women’s lives. She has been a charter member of Ventura County Women’s Political Council since our founding, a long-standing activist in National Women’s Political Caucus-Ventura County, and a long-time advocate of women’s and social justice issues in Ventura County.

Irma was born and raised in Ventura County. She is an extraordinary hostess to progressive political and social justice events. Irma and her husband, Dr. Manuel Lopez (former mayor of Oxnard), open up their beautiful Oxnard home for many county activities.

As women have achieved more success in politics, business and community affairs, Irma has always been out front, giving of her time, her energy, and her organizing skills to put us “over the top.”

At our annual fundraiser, we will honor Irma and celebrate the recent successes of VCWPC at a festive garden party held at the Oxnard home of Gail Weller Brown and Jerry Brown.

Tickets:  $25 members; $30 non-members
Sponsors:  $200 (includes 2 free tickets)
Will be recognized on the program, at the event and on VCWPC’s website.

Pay for your tickets at the door or make a secure online payment by going here.

If you plan to pay at the door, please e-mail your RSVP to  Questions may be directed to or (805) 983-4096.

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Jo Ann Olivares — Our endorsed candidate for the June 4 Oxnard City Council
Special Election

VCWPC has endorsed Jo Ann Olivares for Oxnard City Council in the special election to be held June 4, 2013. VCWPC members have held a special precinct walk day for Jo Ann as well as supporting her campaign with a financial contribution.

Ventura County Star: Olivares best for Oxnard council in June 4 election

“Thirteen candidates are offering themselves to Oxnard voters in the June 4 special election for one seat on the City Council.

The Star’s Editorial Board thinks candidate Jo Ann Olivares has the perfect blend of skills, temperament and background to excel in this job.”

Jo Ann was born and raised in Oxnard, attended local schools and currently works as Human Resources Director for San Miguel Produce, a local farming company. Jo Ann cares about women’s rights, education and family issues and will be an excellent addition to Oxnard’s City Council.

Learn more about Jo Ann Olivares and volunteer to help her campaign by visiting her website at;

(805) 889-0775; 141 South A St., Oxnard, CA 93036

If you live in Oxnard, please remember to vote!

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VCWPC Annual Meeting featured Congresswoman Julia Brownley

On February 2, 2013, we were fortunate to hear from Congresswoman Julia Brownley when she addressed VCWPC’s Annual Meeting at the Tower Club in Oxnard. She reported on her first month in Washington.

With 89 freshman in the 113th Congress, this is the second largest class in the history of Congress and the first one to have a majority of women and minorities, including Latino, LGBT, African-American as well as veteran members such as Tammy Duckworth. Duckworth is Asian-American, a double amputee and one of the first women to fly combat missions in Iraq. The Congresswoman said she was thrilled to witness the President’s swearing-in on the steps of the Capitol on Martin Luther King’s birthday — and reported that she was humbled by the experience.

Brownley’s new District Director is Carmina Armenta, an experienced staff leader who previously worked for Planned Parenthood as well as Congressman Howard Berman and Senator Barbara Boxer. Cheri Orgel is the Congresswoman’s Deputy Director. Brownley opened an office in Thousand Oaks and on the fourth floor of the Tower Building where we held our event.

Brownley is serving on the House Committee on Veteran’s Affairs. She was also elected as Ranking Member of the Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Health, and also serves on the Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity. As Ranking Member of the Health Subcommittee, she will focus on improving veterans’ access to mental health care, improving services for female veterans, and helping service members transition from the military to the veterans’ health care system. Congresswoman Brownley has already visited many of the Southern California military establishments to educate herself on veteran’s health needs and service availability and took suggestions from members of the military at our event. Additionally, Brownley is a member of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee.

Her website is You can sign up for her newsletter or write her concerning issues you’re interested in.

Congresswoman Brownley’s local offices:
Oxnard: 300 E. Esplanade Drive, Suite 470, Oxnard 93036; Phone: 805-379-1779 – Hours Mon.-Fri., 9:00 am – 5:30 pm.
Thousand Oaks: 223 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Suite 411, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360; Phone: 805-379-1779 – Hours Mon-Fri, 9:00 am – 5:30 pm.

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Join Us for Our Annual Meeting
& Board Election

Meet Ventura County’s new Congresswoman

Julia Brownley

who will report on her first month in Washington, D.C.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

1 p.m.
The Tower Club
Financial Plaza
300 E. Esplanade Drive,  Oxnard

The Tower Club
$25 members / $30 non-members
Program & Lunch
To pay by credit card go here.

Members who want to attend the election portion only may come at 2:15 at no charge.


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Let’s Give a Big Round of Applause to
All VCWPC Endorsed Candidates!

Win or lose, these exceptional women campaigned hard and absolutely earned our support and admiration for their tireless efforts in pursuit of elected office. We’re ecstatic that Julia Brownley prevailed in one of the closest congressional races in the country. Fran Pavley won a tough re-election fight in a newly drawn district against a well-financed opponent, Hannah-Beth Jackson handily won her Senate seat and first-time candidate Vianey Lopez was the top vote getter in her race for Hueneme School District.

All told, 11 of our 16 endorsed candidates were victorious. Our gratitude goes out to the VCWPC members and friends who helped carry our candidates to victory.

Julia Brownley 26th Congressional District – won
Hannah-Beth Jackson 19th Senate District – won
Fran Pavley* 27th Senate District – won
Betsy Connolly* Conejo Valley Unified – won
Linda Taylor* Ojai Unified – won
Christina Urias Santa Paula Unified – won
(previously elected to SP High School Board which is being replaced by the Unified School district)
Vianey Lopez Port Hueneme School District – won
Sylvia Alejandra Lizama Oxnard Union HIgh School District – lost
Roseann Mikos* Moorpark City Council – won
Carmen Ramirez Oxnard Mayor – lost
Barbra Williamson* Simi Valley City Council – lost
Jacqui Irwin* Thousand Oaks City Council – won
Debbie Birenbaum Thousand Oaks City Council – lost
Kate O’Brien* Rancho Simi Recreation & Parks District – won
Elaine Freeman* Rancho Simi Recreation & Parks District – won
Janna Orkney Calleguas Muni Water District Div 2 – lost

(will continue her term on Triunfo Sanitation District board)
* denotes incumbent

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Announcing our endorsed candidates
for the November 6 general election

The Ventura County Women’s Political Council is pleased to announce its slate of endorsed candidates for November.

These candidates are a wonderfully diverse group representing Democrats, Republicans, Independents, eight cities, first-time candidates and multi-term incumbents. They are seeking office for Congress, State Senate, special districts, school boards, city councils and a mayoral race.

Each candidate completed our detailed endorsement application and was interviewed by members of the Political Action Committee before being recommended for endorsement. All of the endorsed candidates stated their agreement with our key issues – Social, Economic, Educational and Environmental Justice and Reproductive Health – as defined in our position papers.

Please choose a candidate or two for your direct support and give a few hours of your time to their campaign, put up a yard sign or write a personal check.

26th Congressional District – Julia Brownley;(805) 330-1070; P.O. Box 2018,Thousand Oaks, CA 91377

27th State Senate District – Fran Pavley; (805) 370-5414; 33 W. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Unit C, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

19th State Senate District – Hannah-Beth Jackson; (805) 216-7362; P.O. Box 92010, Santa Barbara, CA 93190

Oxnard City Mayor - Carmen Ramirez; (805) 216-7362; 2081 N. Oxnard Blvd., #150, Oxnard, CA 93036

Moorpark City Council – Roseann Mikos; (805) 529-4828 ; 14371 E. Cambridge St., Moorpark, CA 93021

Simi Valley City Council – Barbra Williamson; (805) 231-2497; 2731 Erringer Rd., Unit 1, Simi Valley, CA  93065

Thousand Oaks City Council - Deborah Birenbaum
birenbaum4council@gmail.com; (805) 368-1934; 1005 Meadowcrest Street Newbury Park   CA  91320

Thousand Oaks City Council - Jacqui Irwin; (805) 358- 1268; 2516 Northpark Street, Thousand Oaks, 91362

Conejo Valley Unified School District - Betsy Connolly ; ; (805) 498-3638; 863 Calle Compo, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

Hueneme School District - Vianey Lopez; (805) 204-7500; 3004 Jackson St. Oxnard, CA 93033

Ojai Unified School District - Linda Taylor; (805) 646 9892; 912 N Drown St, Ojai, CA 93023

Oxnard Union High School District - Sylvia Alejandra Lizama; (805) 445-8435; 5533 Butterfield Street, Camarillo, CA 93012

Santa Paula Unified School District - Christina “Tina” Urias; (805) 407-2738; 919 La Vuelta Pl, Santa Paula, CA 93060

Calleguas Municipal Water District - Janna Orkney; (818) 707-9906; P.O. Box 3072, Thousand Oaks, CA 91359

Rancho Simi Recreation & Parks District - Elaine Freeman; (805) 577-1274; 5837 Cochran Street, Simi Valley, C. 93063

Rancho Simi Recreation & Parks District - Kate O’Brien; (805) 501-3623 3460 Township Ave., Simi Valley, CA 93063

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The VCWPC Looks Back
at the June 5 Primary

Kudos are due to all of our VCWPC-endorsed candidates: Julia Brownley, 26th Congressional District; Fran Pavley, 27th State Senate District; Hannah-Beth Jackson, 19th State Senate District and Christy Weir, Board of Supervisors, District 1. Each woman ran a hard fought race and made our organization proud to call them our sisters. Their campaigns proved beyond a doubt that our endorsements were well placed.

Unfortunately, Independent candidate Christy Weir ended her run for office with the primary. Had dynamics remained what they were when she entered the race for District 1 Supervisor, we believe that she could have gone on to victory. The decision of the current supervisor to drop out of the Congressional race and reenter the Supervisor’s race changed the picture. We applaud Christy for her efforts. We are happy that she continues to serve as a valuable member of the Ventura City Council.

We are proud to announce that our other three endorsed candidates – Julia, Fran and Hannah-Beth – will continue on to the November 6 general election. Each faces a major challenge from their male counterpart.

The 26th Congressional District race in California is making headlines. For the first time in decades, Ventura County will have a good chance to enter the progressive column. Julia Brownley’s campaign has truly been a “boots on the ground” effort. Individual donations and thousands of phone calls from dedicated campaign volunteers led to her victory over three other Democrats and one Independent. Her opponent, State Senator Tony Strickland, has a huge war chest. One can only imagine the barrage of mailers that his campaign is waiting to let loose.

State Senator Fran Pavley finds herself in a more difficult position as she runs for the 27th State Senate district. Well known for her environmental victories as a state assemblywoman and state senator, with redistricting, she now faces a more conservative electorate. She and her opponent Republican Todd Zink (first time office seeker, deputy D.A., Lt. Col. who served in Afghanistan) were unchallenged.

Former Assemblywoman Hannah-Beth Jackson is in line to become our next State Senator for the 19th District. She outpolled her Democratic challenger and faces a runoff against Republican Mike Stoker, a former Santa Barbara County Supervisor. Even though it appears that Hannah-Beth has the votes to pull off a victory in November, candidates can never take anything for granted.

The VCWPC pledges our support to help Julia, Fran and Hannah-Beth win their respective races. Voter turnout for the primary was a paltry 25.08%. We are a pro-choice women’s political committee. Our job is cut out for us. We have five months. The clock is running!

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Announcing our Endorsed Candidates!

Julia Brownley (Congressional District 26)
PO Box 2018, Thousand Oaks, CA 91377
(805) 330-1070

Fran Pavley (Senate District 27)
PO Box 1833, Agoura Hills, CA 91376
(818) 921-6825

Hannah-Beth Jackson (Senate District 19)
P.O. Box 92010, Santa Barbara, CA 93190

Christy Weir (Ventura County Board of Supervisors, District 1)

For each candidate the VCWPC endorsement includes use of our name on campaign material, a financial donation and use of our current membership roster.

We encourage you to choose one (or more!) candidates and send a personal donation, volunteer to work on their campaign or provide names and contact information of friends and family within their district.

Or better yet, send an email, write a letter or post a message on Facebook to let your friends and family know that you are personally supporting these candidates and encourage them to do the same!

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Equal rights begin with equal representation

The Ventura County Women’s Political Council (VCWPC) promotes women’s participation in the political process to bring women’s perspectives to every issue. We recruit, train and support women who will advance public policy that provides for equal protection, well being and opportunity to prosper for all women.

Women currently hold less than a third of state and federal office. We need equal representation at all levels of government. Our goal is to create a culture in which elected women are the norm.

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