Mike Parker For Richmond Mayor

By the People, For the People

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Mike Parker for Mayor
PO Box 5514, Richmond, CA 94805

Mike Parker for Mayor
Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin strongly supports Mike.
Mayor Gayle McLaughlin

"Mike  has thrown himself into our progressive work in Richmond for years now.  He is able and willing to continue so many of the wonderful initiatives we have in place.

"In addition to his work in the RPA, including being the editor of the RPA newsletter, Mike has long experience in the union movement and in industry. He has worked with his hands and his head.  He is an educator and organizer. Currently he is  a job trainer for hi-tech jobs, the kind of jobs we need to train our young people for. 

He holds the progressive values and vision that have led us to making so many accomplishments. He wants to continue to build on this work that we in Richmond have accomplished together.  I am so excited to be running with him."

Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin


I am running with a really great team of people who are principled and dedicated to representing the people of Richmond.

Jovanka Beckles, Mike Parker, Eduardo Martinez, Gayle McLaughlin
Chevron is a very important part of Richmond
We want Chevron to stay in Richmond
We want it to be a good neighbor
We deserve it to be state-of-the-art safe and clean with training and hiring of Richmond residents Chevron’s decisions are first guided by their bottom line profits
It’s up to us to negotiate as a community to guide Chevron to being a good neighbor, and to place greater emphasis on safety and clean operation.

Frederick Douglas"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters.

"This struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, and it may be both moral and physical, but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both.

~ Frederick Douglass 1887


Continuing a Decade of Progress

Working with many others in Richmond, we’ve made a lot of progress over the last ten years but there is still much to be done. Our values of equality, democracy, respect, and integrity will lead the way. There are many items we need to work on as a community.

Here are four areas I believe need special attention:

  1. Address the educational system that is failing our children. We will focus on what the city can do to change this in partnership with the School District. We will start with trial efforts to make the concept of schools as community centers a reality.
  2. Greatly improve job training programs in Richmond. The key to attracting good paying jobs to Richmond is to have a trained workforce ready. The key for Richmond residents getting the good jobs that come to Richmond is good job training. We can strengthen and link City programs, high schools, adult education, and the community colleges to provide the kind of training that will produce more jobs for Richmond residents.
  3. Help keep our communities stable. The gentrification pressures combined with real estate speculators that drive current Richmond residents out of their homes will only increase in the next few years. Now is the time to put in place plans that will keep homeowners in their homes and keep rents affordable.
  4. Strengthen the efforts of community, union and social justice organizations in their efforts to bring change and improvement. Whether the changes involve playlots, stopping discrimination against immigrants, or getting Chevron to pay its fair share, they usually require an active partnership between movements of people and the elected officials.
For a more complete list of the qualities in Richmond that
we can achieve by working together, click HERE >>
Why I am running for mayor

Richmond has made remarkable progress in the past 10 years. Richmond has come from a city known for its murder rate, toxic dumps, polluted air, and corrupt city government to a city with a solid and improving government, a lot of promise and a can-do attitude. Violent crime has been significantly reduced.  We are increasingly known for our shoreline parks and great views of the bay and as a city willing to stand up to protect and improve the health, safety and opportunities of its residents. All of this progress took place because we broke the system of politics-as-usual where Big Money called the shots. 

Everybody is upset by corporate domination of our politics. Across the nation corporations and rich individuals have never exercised more control of our government than they do now. In Richmond we have fought the power of Big Money.  We have shown that you can win elections without taking money from corporations. The people can win.  But it’s hard work.  It requires a large number of people debating the issues and talking to their neighbors. It requires raising hundreds of small contributions.

It also requires independent people willing to run for office. Why is this hard? Because if you don’t make a deal with Big Money, they will spend five times your entire campaign budget on smear campaigns telling everyone what an awful person you are. This reality discouraged a lot of good people who would have made fine candidates for mayor. I know – I encouraged a number to run.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Richmond Progressives led the way in attracting the LBNL to locate in Richmond.  Now the challenge is to make sure it benefits Richmond and that Richmond residents get jobs.

This election is too important to concede to Big Money. The progress we’ve made is too valuable to surrender. And we must continue to fight for our health and safety.  We need a Mayor and a City Council that will be reasonable but firm about ensuring that Chevron’s Richmond Refinery is the safest and cleanest in the world.

Every  candidate declares that their priorities are  jobs, health, safety, and education. But what polices get these? In the real world, candidates whose campaigns are financed by Big Money use these terms as an excuse  for giving corporations what they want. Look at who worked to bring Richmond Bay Campus (LBNL) to Richmond;  forced Chevron to pay increased taxes, forced Chevron to clean up its flaring,  made city government more responsive, supported community efforts for bike trails and shoreline.  And who opposed these or dragged their feet.

Although I have never held an elected position in city government, I have long studied how it works. And I have worked closely with Mayor McLaughlin on a number of important issues over the last 7 years, so I have a good understanding of Richmond’s history, organizations, and current initiatives. I also bring with me a lot of experience in training people for skilled jobs in the trades.  I know what is required to get these jobs and how the schools and society have left so many people unprepared for these jobs.  This is one of the key challenges we face.  How do we get Richmond residents trained to apply successfully for the good jobs that will be available locally?  My expertise and interest in these issues is one more thing that sets me apart from the other candidates.

Finally, one skill I would bring to the job of Mayor is that I know how to attract and organize volunteers. City government does not have the money or the power to do everything that needs to be done. And it probably never should. So much must be accomplished by individual volunteers working together on social services and on issue campaigns. The City can support these organizations and initiatives. We all know that Mayor McLaughlin’s energy and commitment to creating a culture of volunteerism and community activity has been part of her legacy. It would be an honor to have the chance to build on her work.

Like Mayor McLaughlin, I commit to representing you.

Mike Parker

Why this election matters:

  • Continued improvements in Richmond
    We have improved Richmond through greater transparency, encouraging community participation, and setting a broad progressive agenda.  We need to continue reducing crime through community policing, protecting our natural resources, and proposing bold programs to help and protect our residents and community.  These are all under threat if we go back to the old style money-driven politics.

  • Negotiation of Safe Chevron operations

    Refinery Modernization, Yes.

     Done Right , Yes

    • Safe
    • Significant reduction in local pollution and greenhouse gas emissions
    • Supplies training and jobs for Richmond residents
    Chevron’s presence dominates our city.  The Richmond Refinery generates over $20 billion/year in sales and around $2 billion/year in operating profits. Chevron makes its decisions according to what is best for its corporate profits.  And now, Chevron is trying to buy a Council that will rubberstamp those decisions.   The Council and mayor must be people whose job is to negotiate with Chevron representing the best interests and needs of the residents.

    The refinery must be modernized. This is a process which starts with the current Chevron proposal but will go on continually. What needs to be guaranteed is that the modernization provides everyone with the safest possible refinery operations, significant local reduction in pollution and greenhouse gasses, and jobs for Richmond residents. This election is about who you can trust to negotiate for Richmond. 
Mike Parker for Mayor, 2014, PO Box 5514, Richmond CA 94805
MikeParkerforRichmond@gmail.com    ·    (510) 842-5207     ·     FPPC# 1363920