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June 19, 2021

Candidates qualify for Gilroy ballot

Election is Nov. 3

The candidate list for the Nov. 3 election has been finalized.

Offices up for election are the Gilroy City Council (three seats and mayor), Gilroy Unified (Trustee Areas 2, 3, 5 and 6), Gavilan College (Trustee Area 2, 4 and 6), San Martin County Water District (four seats) and South Santa Clara Valley Memorial District (three seats). Also on the November ballot are races for U.S. president, as well as a host of other national and state races.

The qualifying period for the offices ended Aug. 7, while the period for the mayor and council seats was extended to Aug. 12 because the incumbents had not filed by the deadline.

In the Gilroy mayoral race, two candidates will vie to fill the seat that will be vacated by Roland Velasco: current Councilmember Marie Blankley and architect Reid Lerner.

Five candidates have qualified to run for the three open seats on the Gilroy City Council. Incumbents Carol Marques and Fred Tovar will look to keep their seats, while union representative Rebeca Armendariz, firefighter Zach Hilton and retired financial officer Danny Mitchell will seek a spot on the council. Longtime Councilmember Cat Tucker is not running for reelection.

The Gilroy Unified School District will hold its first district election for the Board of Education.

Board elections are now by trustee area, where voters cast their ballots for the board seat in their area instead of the previous district-wide elections.

Voters will elect four members to the school board: three in newly adopted trustee areas, and another to fill the vacancy following Anisha Munshi’s resignation in June. 

In Area 2, incumbent Mark Good will face educator Nirza Starks. Three candidates will vie for the two-year Area 3 term: student Jonathan Hurtado, product manager Kevin Moller and retired educator Michelle Nelson. For Area 6, educator Melissa Nicholson Aguirre will challenge incumbent BC Doyle for the seat.

According to the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters, no candidates have filed for the Area 5 seat, which will be vacated by James Pace, who is not seeking reelection.

For information on the Gilroy City Council and mayoral race, visit For the Board of Education race, visit

Gilroy Mayor

Marie Blankley (Councilmember/CPA)

Reid Lerner (Architect)

Gilroy City Council

Carol Marques (Incumbent)

Fred Tovar (Incumbent)

Rebeca Armendariz (Union Business Representative)

Zach Hilton (Firefighter/Paramedic)

Danny Mitchell (Retired Financial Officer)

Gilroy Unified School District Board of Education Area 2

Mark Good (Incumbent)

Nirza Starks (Parent/Educator)

Gilroy Unified School District Board of Education Area 3 (Short term)

Jonathan Hurtado (Student)

Kevin Moller (Product Manager)

Michelle Nelson (Retired Educator)

Gilroy Unified School District Board of Education Area 5

No candidates filed

Gilroy Unified School District Board of Education Area 6

BC Doyle (Incumbent)

Melissa Nicholson Aguirre (Educator)

Gavilan College Board of Trustees Area 2

Johnathan Brusco (Incumbent)

Gavilan College Board of Trustees Area 4

Mark Dover (Incumbent)

Patricia Mondragon (Educator)

Gavilan College Board of Trustees Area 6

Rachel Perez (Incumbent)

San Martin County Water Director

Sandra Flores (Incumbent)

San Martin County Water Director (Short term)

Alan Bahnsen (Appointed Incumbent)

South Santa Clara Valley Memorial District

Ermelindo Puente (Incumbent)

John Ceballos (Incumbent)

30th Assembly

Robert Rivas (Incumbent), Democrat

Gregory Swett (Walnut Grower/Trustee), Republican

19th Congressional

Zoe Lofgren (Incumbent), Democrat

Justin James Aguilera (Businessman), Republican

20th Congressional

Jimmy Panetta (Incumbent), Democrat

Jeff Gorman (Small Business Owner), Republican

17th State Senate

Vicki Nohrden (Businesswoman), Republican

John Laird (Natural Resources Secretary), Democrat

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