Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 10/27

Be aware of bullying

Over the last few weeks, The Tribune has featured articles on bullying. This important topic was the focus of a Soroptimist International of the Sierra Pacific district meeting on Oct. 23 in Gilroy.

Seven members of Soroptimist International San Luis Obispo attended a talk featuring a keynote speaker from Kid Power, a nonprofit that provides awareness and prevention training all over the world. It was stated that bullying is an imbalance of power and a learned behavior over time. The biggest weapon against bullying is to develop self-esteem in children and build it in adults. Bullying can be a threat to the quality of life of people of all ages.

The theme was that doing things builds skills, not talking, and safety happens when someone makes a safer choice. Soroptimist International of San Luis Obispo’s mission is to improve the lives of women and girls in local communities and throughout the world.

We would like to educate others to be aware of bullying tactics and situations, help victims of bullying take charge of the situation and advise the victim to get help when bullying occurs.

Cathy LeMoine

Soroptimist International of San Luis Obispo president

No vote for tea party

I admit to being confused over your front-page article about the race between Lois Capps and Tom Watson (“Watson may be tough competition for Lois Capps,” Oct. 25). 

Watson predicts that lots of Democrats will vote for a tea party candidate because they are disgruntled. Is this statement intended to impress the voters with Watson’s thinking ability? Because I don’t know of one Democrat who would ever vote to have a tea party member represent them, disgruntled or not. 

And I think that being able to think clearly and logically is an important quality in a leader.  Maybe this prediction is intended to confuse or mislead people, which is not a good sign. But if he really does think what he’s saying, that’s worse!

Katherine Koch

Los Osos

What it takes

After thoroughly studying the qualifications of the candidates for the Lucia Mar school board, I’m supporting Cathy Springford. She is smart, dedicated to the education of our children and she will do her homework to assure that kids come first.

I was a school administrator for 20 years and know that Springford has what it takes to coordinate effective school programs. Springford can be counted on to make the tough decisions that keep any essential cuts as far from students as possible.

My experience clearly indicates that we don’t want a former president of the teachers union controlling the powers of the purse strings in our schools.

Please learn about the candidates and support the best qualified. Vote Cathy Springford for the Lucia Mar school board.

Richard L. Welch

Grover Beach

Bumpy travels

As a bike rider, I’m very disappointed that the newly paved section of Los Osos Valley Road terminating at Higuera Street is both rough and bumpy.

It seems rougher and bumpier than it had been before the paving. We do have the technology and expertise to make smooth roads, do we not?

Edward Thomas

San Luis Obispo

Consensus critical

The Tribune editorial writers were incisive in determining that their endorsement for the state Assembly should be based on “identifying a candidate who seems in a better position to build consensus” (“Tribune endorses Zacarias for state Assembly seat,” Oct. 24).

This criteria is especially key because a two-year term gives little room for a learning curve and the person who in the past has created positive working relationships across party lines would be well positioned to get off to a great start.

Mayors in the 33rd Assembly District have all had a chance to work with Katcho Achadjian for more than a dozen years. They have seen him bring divergent voices together to solve complex problems.

That’s why, regardless of whether they are Democrats, Republicans or those who decline to state, every single sitting mayor in the 33rd District, from Paso Robles to Lompoc, has endorsed Achadjian for state Assembly.

Achadjian is the consensus builder who I believe is in position to serve best.

Linda M. Austin


A rare combination

During campaign season, it’s easy to get lost in mailers and advertisements from various candidates and eventually get so frustrated we simply give up and vote a “party ticket.” This election, I hope you’ll vote for someone who has the education, experience and strong business sense rarely found in a candidate. That person is Hilda Zacarias for the 33rd Assembly seat.

I had the opportunity to work with Zacarias initially on a program to help unite the community at large to make a safer and more efficient educational environment for kids. Later, after she attended Harvard, I worked with her at the historic Dana Adobe as she filled the role of interim executive director while the board searched for a permanent director.

I found Zacarias to be a tough and determined leader who kept each program and staff member on task and on budget. She stayed focused on achieving the final goals for each program.

Zacarias is a strong leader who knows how to stretch a dollar as well as keep order when multiple personalities and special interests try to harm a good plan with their self-interests. Let’s give Zacarias a chance to support the Central Coast in Sacramento.

Ethel Landers


Diverse experience

I am writing this letter in support of Paul Brown who is running for mayor of San Luis Obispo.

I have had the privilege of knowing Brown for more than 20 years through our mutual businesses in downtown San Luis Obispo.

During this period of time, Brown was involved with the Grizzly Youth Academy mentoring troubled young adults and serving his country in the military, all while continuing to run his restaurant business. Brown is involved in several nonprofit causes. He has been serving on the board of directors of the Senior Nutrition Program of San Luis Obispo County for the past seven years and also served on the City Council of San Luis Obispo.

Because of Brown’s diverse experiences in areas of military service and discipline, small-business operations and budgeting, nonprofit sector and city affairs, I have full confidence in his abilities to maintain a high level of integrity in the mayor’s office and manage the city business successfully to maintain its charm and high standing.

I urge you to vote for Paul Brown on Nov. 2.

Elias Nimeh

San Luis Obispo

Minimal regulation

Our family owns a small business in the South County and we support Mike Zimmerman as our next supervisor. Zimmerman owns his own business and has been a business advisor for many years. 

Zimmerman will help to keep unreasonable regulations to a minimum and will help create more jobs in our county.

Let’s elect a candidate with real business experience, someone who understands the hardships of owning, running and maintaining a small business in this difficult economic climate.

We strongly urge voters to elect Mike Zimmerman for supervisor on Nov. 2.

Kevin Delaney

Arroyo Grande

Candidate comparison

We consider comparing candidates running for public office our civic duty. We compared the two sheriff candidates as follows:

Candidate Ian Parkinson: Promoted within the ranks over 26 years, has not held position of chief. No special certifications presented for consideration, no special educational completions. Spent almost entire life in the same community. A viable candidate, a good citizen.

Candidate Joe Cortez:

36 years of service. As a deputy sheriff, worked within two different agencies, promoted from within. Made career decision, applied for and was accepted as chief of police and moved to a new community and state. Hired as chief in two more communities, the last of which was Pismo Beach.

While chief, the department became nationally accredited, one of only five in our state achieving that level. Presents several certifications, including FEMA first response and FBI training. Completed bachelor of science degree and has begun master’s in leadership. Stable, secure family life. A highly viable candidate, a good citizen.

Neither candidate is a personal friend and cannot beg our vote on that ground. Our vote is in the best interests of the community and the Sheriff Department personnel. Our vote is: elect Joe Cortez as sheriff of San Luis Obispo County.

Lois and David Hughes

Arroyo Grande

Only one choice

Residents of San Luis Obispo have benefited for the past eight years by having a full-time mayor. There is a question now concerning who among the candidates will be able to make that kind of commitment to the city.

I believe that only one mayoral candidate fits the description. It is the current City Council member who has retired from her legal practice so that she has the time necessary to do the job as it should be done.

Jan Marx is not only the most experienced and best qualified candidate, but she is the one with the focus and strength of purpose to devote herself completely to serving as mayor, full time. This is why I support Jan Marx for mayor.

John Snetsinger

San Luis Obispo

Positive approach

Who is Ian Parkinson?

When Ian was only 18, he said, “Dad, I want to be a police officer.” He quickly became a Morro Bay Auxiliary and attended the Police Academy. By 19, Ian was a sworn police officer and after 26 years of service to this county, he hasn’t looked back.

Ian’s positive approach is reflected in his campaign. He consistently avoids negative campaigning, restricting statements to pointing out differences. He focuses on issues, especially his 10-point plan to transform and restore the integrity of our Sheriff’s Department.

Natural leadership is evidenced by his 18 years as chief of Mid-State Fair security and his spearheading of technological improvements for the San Luis Obispo police.

It is interesting to note that one of Joe Cortez’s predecessors, Ed Williams, as well as the current Pismo Beach Chief Jeff Norton (who worked under Cortez for seven years), have both enthusiastically endorsed Ian for sheriff (Contrary to negative rumors of favoritism, Ian never met either chief until after he graduated from Mammoth High School).

Obviously, as Ian’s father, I have known him since birth; I hope my fellow citizens of San Luis Obispo County will join me in voting for him.

Brad Parkinson

San Luis Obispo

Unique perspective

Jim Quesenberry will make an excellent school board trustee for the San Luis Coastal Unified School District. Quesenberry, recently retired from many years of teaching at Morro Bay High School, was a well-respected colleague and mentor to fellow teachers and students during his tenure.  

Quesenberry’s children attended San Luis Coastal Unified School District schools and Quesenberry was an involved parent and educator. Quesenberry is committed to ensuring the best educational opportunities for all students and will offer a unique perspective on the school board.  

You will find Quesenberry to be insightful, articulate, fair-minded and knowledgeable about all issues facing the school district. The only special interest Quesenberry has is, “Is this good for students?”

We are teachers in San Luis Coastal and wholeheartedly endorse Jim Quesenberry for the San Luis Coastal Unified School District school board. Please consider casting your vote for Quesenberry.

Remember, “Mr. Q puts kids first!”

Pam Alford, Cheryl McLean, Linda Smiley, Therese Kersten, Jana Bragg, Caroline Rayburn, Christine Nunn, Mary McConnell, Russell Rayburn, Judy Neuhauser, John Kersten, Elita Chaffin and Evelyn Frame

A voice of reason

During these times of financial uncertainty and future challenges, the position of city councilman is too important to be an “on-the-job-training” seat.

I am ready to be a committed and passionate full-time member of the Atascadero City Council and put my years of extensive varied experience to work for our city as we move into the future.

As a young Eagle Scout, I learned about the importance of our environment. My years as a Marine Corps officer honed my leadership skills and taught me what it is to “accomplish the mission.”

As a businessman for 35 years, including founding an international corporation, I learned the value of listening to and working with people of different points of view to accomplish difficult goals and objectives.

As a member of the City Council, I will be a strong and independent voice of reason beholden to no political action committee or other special interest groups. I will make myself readily accessible to all the people of our diverse community and will listen to their concerns and recommendations.

I would be honored to have your vote for City Council.

Chuck Ward

Candidate for Atascadero City Council