Assembly District 37






37 Dana Licata No SIF
37 Jonathan Abboud * OSIF
37 Joel F. Block No OSIF
37 Lorrie Brown No SIF
37 Michael Roysner No OSIF
37 Denise Elamin No SIF
37 Nicholas Begane No OSIF
37 Darlene Killgore No SIF
37 Kim Mina No SIF
37 Diana Sparagna No SIF
37 Luz Reyes-Martín No SIF
37 Peter Wright No OSIF
37 Dan Mora No OSIF
37 Sam Ramirez No OSIF
37 Chiany Dri No SIF
37 Chelsea Lancaster No SIF
37 Patricia Zavala No OSIF
37 Michael Cheng * OSIF
37 Vincent R. Stewart No OSIF
37 Tyler Barth No OSIF
37 Joe S. Ramirez * OSIF
37 Jordan A. Killebrew No OSIF
37 James Kyriaco No OSIF
37 Wendy Santamaria No SIF
37 Micheula Fletchall * SIF

Candidate Statements

I truly believe that California is the greatest state in the Nation. In the North, we drive technological innovation and produce world class wines. The middle of the State allows us to supply nearly half the produce for the entire country. While Southern California is a hub for world-famous entertainment, culture, and history. Altogether, California consistently ranks at having around the ~7th largest economy in the entire world. Given this information, how is it possible that 1 in 8 Californians are food insecure, struggling, living paycheck-to-paycheck?

In most developed nations, having a strong economy and bountiful resources would produce a high standard of living, with every citizen thriving. With our level of economic strength, there is no excuse for ANY California inhabitant to be worried about whether they will be able to afford groceries for the month.

So what’s happening? How can we begin to fix this? The issue here does not lie with any citizen populations. The issue lies in the fact that most politicians act out of self-interest, starting at a local level and extending all the way up to the national level. It seems that career politicians lose sight of the fact that they are, first and foremost, public servants. The “leaders” of our State and region are simply not being held accountable.

I was born and raised in California and I was taught to love this state. I was taught to be proud of living in one of the most beautiful and progressive States in this country. But what good is such a State if it cannot take care of its own inhabitants?

My name is Dana Licata, I am a 23 year old student about to pursue her Master’s degree in Public Policy. But who I am exactly doesn’t matter. My vision to make California a better place for every single inhabitant is what I hope speaks to people. I believe that others can identify with my goal to create the California that we’ve been taught to believe was exceptional, inclusive, and just.

As your delegate representative for the 37th AD, I am committed to amplifying this cause in delegate meetings by pushing for legislation that reflects this vision. I will only endorse candidates who are competent and committed to the well being of California and her inhabitants. Additionally, I intend to hold all elected officials accountable for their voting behaviors.

Learn more:

Dana Licata

My name is Jonathan Abboud and I am running to represent our community to the California Democratic Party as the 37th Assembly District Executive Board Representative. I would be honored to earn your vote.

I’m a 28 year old UC Santa Barbara Alum, a 10 year resident of Santa Barbara County, and this is my third term running to be a delegate. Since 2014 I’ve served as an elected Trustee on the Santa Barbara City College Board representing Isla Vista and Hope Ranch.

The past eight years I’ve volunteered for Democratic initiatives and candidates across the central coast. This past November I fundraised for, helped coordinate, and volunteered in an effort between 805 Young Democrats chapters to register and turnout record breaking numbers of young Democratic voters in both Ventura & Santa Barbara Counties. The past seven years I’ve worked on Isla Vista self-governance through the creation of the Isla Vista Community Services District, where I now work as the General Manager.

I am excited about the opportunity to continue building a state party that will lead the country in tangible and progressive action, especially on the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic recovery need, racial justice, and climate change. Allow me to share some of my priorities and accomplishments:

Keep Young People at the Table: Young people in our community are burdened by unprecedented levels of student debt, limited quality jobs, and lack of affordable rental housing or homeownership. We must have young people involved in deciding solutions to these issues.

Strengthening our Platform: I’ve served on the Platform Committee for four years to ensure that it is focused and progressive on public education, affordable housing, internet freedom, political reform, labor rights, healthcare, and climate, economic, and racial justice. There is more to do after the past year’s discussions on policing, student debt, and the pandemic.

A People’s Party: I will continue to support a more inclusive process for committee membership selection, the creation of a state party endorsement questionnaire based off of the platform as the local parties do, and reforms to limit the party’s acceptance of funds that do not align with our values, such as fossil fuels.

My door is always open – my email is and I’d love to discuss the future of our party so we can bring everyone along.

Jonathan Abboud

I am a lifelong Democrat and I have voted in every election since 1974. I have lived in Santa Barbara for nearly 30 my years. I have been active in politics for all of my adult life.

I am an educator and work with at risk high school students for the Santa Barbara School District. I have been an educator for 39 years.

I serve currently as the Treasurer of the Santa Barbara Teacher’s Association. I am a member of our union’s PAC and, as such, was active in our most recent election.

I am on the School Superintendent’s Teachers’ Advisory Council, I am on our school’s Leadership Team, and I am a member of the school district committee creating a Black Studies course for high school.

In addition to the work I described above I am an attorney and I teach law classes at UCSB in the Professional & Continuing Education Department.

I believe that with my experience and knowledge I will be an asset for the Democratic Party.

Joel F Block

As a student at the University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB), I hope to represent the interests of a younger generation of voters in the state of California and act as a liaison between these youthful groups and the California Democratic Party. In addition, as a part of a generation of voters of which a major portion of their lives occurs online, I hope to help modernize and expand the online presence of the California Democratic Party’s interests. In the past I’ve interned on state senate campaign efforts and I’ve ran and worked on a number of outreach programs as a UCSB student as well as a private citizen. As a delegate I would use my past experiences and current skill set to promote and move the party forward into the future.

Michael Roysner

I’m running to be a State Assembly Delegate for District 37 because it’s my duty as a citizen of this constitutionally limited democratic republic to willfully participate in the governing process. I believe that my 25 years experience as labor (union) negotiator and liaison will be an asset to our collective goal of serving the needs of the people of California. Additionally, I believe that diversity is empowering. It enables us to tap the collective genius and talents of our community.

Denise El Amin

I would be honored to have your support to continue as an ADem for District 37.

As a credentialed teacher and parent of 3 adult children and 5 grandchildren, I advocate to have full funding to keep our public education system public and for all children to have equal access to a public education.
As a union activist, I support the worker’s rights to have a collective voice advocating for input with the education platform, workplace safety, health benefits and economic stability.

My experience includes:
• ADEM (Incumbent AD 37): 5 years
• California Teachers Association (CTA) and National Educators Association (NEA): Life time member
•Oxnard School District: teacher 25 years (total years teaching 28)
•CTA State Council of Education: Sub-committees- Testing and Assessment and Political Action Committee 10 years
•CTA Committees: Political Action Committee Academy 4 years; Release Team Member for Prop 30/32, Prop 55; Released member of State of Emergency
•NEA Annual Representative Assembly Delegate: 8 years
•CTA Service Center Channel Islands Council: Treasurer 10 years
•Oxnard Educators Association: Executive Board member and Treasurer 12 years.
•Tri Counties Education Coalition: Past President and Ventura County Representative 4 years (this state coalition includes union teachers, classified employees, school board trustees and school administrators who meet and agree to bring a unified message to the state legislators)
•School Site Council Member: OSD Schools, RJ Frank and Haydock 15 years

Darlene Killgore

Being involved in the political process is more crucial now than ever. Let me introduce myself to you. I have lived in the city of Ventura and worked in Ventura County for over 15 years. I am currently employed by the California Teachers Association as a union organizer/advocate and have been doing this work throughout southern California, Wisconsin and Arizona for over 23 years. Prior to my work as a union organizer, I was a public school teacher in California for 14 years as a secondary instrumental music teacher. My real love and passion is education and I thoroughly enjoy my current role as an advocate for public school employee unions in Ventura County. I am running for this position because I believe that it is my time to step up, get involved and be an advocate and voice for the workers in my area and throughout the state. I would appreciate your vote and if elected, look forward to being involved in the important work that is ahead for all of us.

Kim Mina


Diana Sparagna announces run for Delegate for CADEM’s State Central Committee in Assembly District 37, Ventura County (DSCC)

Diana Sparagna

818 674-2354

December 14, 2020

Diana Sparagna LLP announces her run for Delegate for CADEM’s State Central Committee in Assembly District 37, Ventura County (DSCC). Additionally, Diana Sparagna submits her intention to become the representative to the Executive Board.

It would be my pleasure to serve the 37th Assembly District as a Delegate to the California State Convention in 2021 to further the progressive values I have championed –

I am a labor attorney and worker’s rights specialist in my law practice. I understand the sociological and economic realities for workers in Southern California who are struggling in this era of COVID-!9.

The need for affordable housing is acute In 2017 I was appointed to the Housing Authority of the City of San Buenaventura where I advocate for affordable and safe housing and appropriate health services for our large population on homeless individuals, families, and veterans.

I work to further transparency in governance particularly in local governing bodies and agencies.

I am involved with policies to address climate change and environmental issues that are front and center in Ventura County. I advocate and donate to Climate First Replacing Oil & Gas, because this small local nonprofit organization is fighting against the behemoth oil and gas industry.

Most significantly, I serve as the President of the Democratic Club of Ventura who successfully conducted a slate mail campaign for three progressive Democrats for Ventura City Council. They won in November 2020 upsetting one long- time incumbent and two Ventura Unified School Board candidates who also won. One new school board member unseated a Republican incumbent.

I am a successful fundraiser for all Democratic candidates from Congress to CA State Senate and Assembly, to Ventura County Supervisors and local officials.

Sparagna & Sparagna LLP, 62 Sagamore Lane, Ventura, CA 93001

818 674-2354

Diana Sparagna

My name is Luz Reyes-Martín (she/her/ella) and I am running for a second term as an Assembly Delegate for the 37th Assembly District! As an active member of the California Democratic Party, I hope to continue serving in this role, advocating for progressive values, and representing the 37th Assembly District.

I am proud to be part of the Progressive Labor Alliance for Justice slate. As a Democrat, community activist, and elected School Board Member, I am fighting every day for working families, public education, environmental justice, immigrant rights, reproductive justice, women’s rights, LGBTQIA+ rights, and for our Central Coast.

I am a resident of Goleta, I serve on the Goleta Union School Board, and I am a strong supporter of public education. As an ADEM, I have been a member of the Progressive Caucus, Women’s Caucus, Environmental Caucus, and the Chicano/Latino Caucus. As a member of these groups, I have been closely following important policy discussions and supporting efforts that would strengthen our Party’s commitment to progressive values and justice.

During this time of COVID-19 and in our recovery in the coming years, I want to work alongside party activists to ensure the California Democratic Party pushes for a recovery that prioritizes and centers marginalized people, working people, public health, women, children, public education, and the environment.

Thank you for your support – I hope I earn your vote to continue as an Assembly Delegate!

Luz Reyes-Martín

My Fellow Democrats,

Growing up in the Santa Ynez Valley, I could not be prouder to see our community embrace our Democratic values more and more in each passing election. We can now say what we could not say ten years ago, “Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties are Democrat country.” I would be honored to represent the 37th Assembly District at state party meetings and ensure that we always have a voice at the table.

I recently ran for a seat on the Santa Ynez Valley Union High School District. Although I was not victorious in the election, I believe we are winning the fight to improve education excellence and equity across California. I loved meeting members of the community on the campaign trail and hearing their vision for their children’s future. Hopes for the future were overwhelmingly oriented towards social justice, caring for the health and wellness of the entire community, and working towards a sustainable environment. This is why I am proud to be a Democrat.

I grew up in the Santa Ynez Valley, graduated from the SYV High in 2001, and have lived in Solvang for the last three years. I have since been an elementary school teacher and held leadership positions in the California Governor’s Office, California Community College Chancellor’s Office, California School Boards Association, and University of California Students Association.

I currently teach public administration and public policy at the University of San Francisco. One of my favorite duties is to take a group of students to Sacramento in the summer where I arrange internships around the State Capitol. In the end, my hope for my students is that they will possess the knowledge to be a part of the solution, and most importantly, that they will feel empowered to participate in the political arena.

Most of all, serving as an ADEM, I will always be available to listen and actively engage our district in decisions being made at the state level. With teamwork and lots of sweat, I believe we can keep riding our blue wave to create a kinder, thriving, and more just Golden State.



Peter Wright

My name is Dan Mora and I am a 3rd generation union member as well as a current elected delegate in AD-37. I am running to continue as an ADEM for our district.

For the past 5 years, I have been the Mobilization Coordinator for the Central Coast Labor Council, where I advocate for the 75+ unions and 100,000+ union members in Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties — fighting for justice, equity and equality in the workplace. If elected, I intend to continue to bring that fight to better our party.

Dan Mora

Elections have consequences. We saw it in 2016 and we’ll see it again. That is why our work must continue. Too often elections are won long before polls open on a Tuesday. They are won when we organize. They are won when we find the right candidates at all levels. They are won when we contribute what we can. They are won when we volunteer. They are won when we hold our elected officials accountable. This is why I am here. I want to help shape our party and our policies long before our next election.

I’ve felt many emotions during this most recent Presidential Election. I’ve felt excitement and disappointment and happiness. I know you have too. So lets come together and continue to move our party and our communities forward.

I’ve had an opportunity to be in the trenches with some of you. I’ve had a chance to do late night phone banks and early morning lit drops. I’ve worked with Labor, and our elected officials.

Our work is not done. The work continues. Together we can do so much. I hope you’ll support me as an 37th Assembly District delegate. Together we can. Together we will. Si se puede!

All the Best,

Sam Ramirez

I have been a resident of Ojai, CA for over a decade and have been a strong leader and advocate in my community for the past 6 years. In 2014 I spearheaded the development of support groups for teen parents in the Ojai Valley and have developed anti-racism curriculum for local non-profits for the past 3 years, which is now taught in four different parts of Ventura county. I am a founder of the Ojai Alliance for Education Equity and one of the founding members of Juneteenth Santa Barbara. These experiences have lead me to run for a position as a delegate for district 37 because I believe in bringing community voices to the center of the conversation. It is my priority to bring an equity lens to decision making that includes visibility for working class families, immigrant families, and marginalized communities so that our most vulnerable families and community members are never left behind.

Chiany Dri

My name is Patricia Zavala, my pronouns are she/hers and I am running to represent our 37th Assembly District . I was born in Guanajuato, Mexico. I am a queer mother of two that strives to make our communities equitable for all.

I take pride in advocating for our LGBTQIA+ youth, our immigrant communities and affordable housing for all. I currently serve as treasurer for the Ventura County Young Democrats. I am excited to be involved and I believe my experience and passion will be an asset to the Democratic Party.

Patricia Zavala

American Families are stretched to the breaking point. We( Democrats and Party Decision Makers) need to do better!

Nearly 26 million adults — or 1 in 8 Americans — reported not having enough food(Chronic Food Insecurity) to eat as of mid-November, according to the latest data from the Census Bureau. That figure has climbed steadily during the pandemic, and has hit record highs since the government agency began collecting such data in 1998.

“We’re supposed to be the greatest, richest country in the world, and we don’t have safety nets for when something like this happens?” said Danielle Nierenberg, president and founder of Food Tank, a nonprofit organization focused on food equity and sustainability.

“People are being forced to steal when they shouldn’t have to, and that’s a great American tragedy.”

As you consider exercising your right to vote on the ADD for the 37th District, I would like to provide you with some information about my candidacy.

My name is Michael Cheng and I am a lifelong democrat. My wife and I reside in Santa Barbara. We have made 37th District our permanent home. The Counties of Santa Barbara and Ventura are the places where we work and volunteer in order to make the area a better place for every one who calls it ‘home.’

I am an activist in the local community. I have volunteered for boards and commissions that adhere to the progressive values. In addition I was an active member of the DCC in excess of ten years. I was elected as a delegate to the CaDem Convention in the past five conventions.

I am most certain I could do more for our community – AD 37!

It is my firm belief we need a representative who would fight for all members of our community and to advocate for those struggling by. We need to protect our beautiful coastlines and mountains for our future generations. We need to address climate change and environmental issues in a decisive manner.

As a lifelong democrat, I pledge to fulfill the core values of our Party: To extend the kindness, decency, empathy & human compassion to our fellow democrats and others in need.

I would be honored to be your representative in the District.

I hope that I can count on your support. I am humbly and respectfully asking for your VOTE!

In Solidarity,

Michael Cheng

My name is Tyler Barth and I am running to be a delegate at the 2021 Assembly District Elections Meetings, representing California Assembly District 37. All of my family and peers that know me well would describe me as unwavering in my commitment to my responsibilities. I am an incredibly motivated person, working tirelessly to advocate for equity and equality for all. Through various outlets as a grassroots activist, I have interwoven myself into the public sphere of politics. I have served on the executive board of Campus Democrats at the University of California, Santa Barbara for two years. As a member of this organization, I have canvassed and phone banked in the Santa Barbara area for city and national elections, ensuring that we elect proper candidates to represent my district. I was heavily involved in a campaign for the Santa Barbara County’s Board of Supervisors seat, for which our endorsed candidate, Joan Hartmann, eventually won. Facilitating important discussions with fellow students is essential in raising awareness of current issues. I take pride in the fact that as a younger person, I can be a voice for so many other youth through political activism. I am fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to do this work as the Community Outreach Director of Campus Democrats, which has laid the groundwork for my future in law. On the national level, I was a fellow with the Jewish Democratic Council of America for this past election cycle. I mobilized Jewish volunteers and voters in 14 critical swing states by personally making thousands of calls on behalf of Democratic candidates, among them state senators, and, of course, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. I assisted with staffing phone banks and get-out-the-vote events. By training volunteers to make calls, I have enhanced my administrative capabilities and expanded my skillset. I know I am qualified to represent California’s 37th State Assembly District at the ADEMs. Thank you all so much for the consideration!

Tyler Barth

My name is Joe S. Ramirez and I from District 19, working with the Progressive Labor Alliance for Justice representing the Counties of Ventura and Santa Barbara. I live in Fillmore, an underserved and underrepresented part of District 19. We in the Santa Clara Valley, which includes Piru, Fillmore and Santa Paula are seeking to have a larger voice in the politics of our county. As a life long Democrat, I have supported and voted for Democratic candidates since 1972. This year, I ran for VCCCD Trustee and unfortunately did not win. Though I received all the endorsements from every Democratic Organization in Ventura County I lost the election. The fact that two elected Democrats endorsed the winner, a non Democrat, of the race, tells me that there is something wrong with our process of supporting candidates. I retired in 2016, having served the community college system for close to 20 years. I served as a Counselor, Dean and Vice President of Student Services at four community colleges. My intention is to continue to strive for higher student success rates at the community college but also K -12. I have an interest in bringing more resources to Santa Clara Valley. I am also concerned about the disparity rates faced in the Latino and African American communities. I have served on the Behavioral Health Advisory Board for approximately 18 months. I am active in local educational and political issues. I work closely with local activists in Fillmore and Santa Paula. I am well known in the educational arena and have an educational consulting business that work with youth that are achieving below their potential. I also work with high school senior in helping them prepare for community college. With a success rate of less than 20% of all community college students graduating or transferring in two years, that is something that needs serious attention. I look forward to serving as a Assembly District Delegate/Executive Board Representative in ADEM. I believe that my experience , educational background, which includes a Masters degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and my passion to help change and heal our communities can be a real asset to the California Democratic Party.

Joe S. Ramirez

I am Jordan A. Killebrew. I call Santa Barbara County my home. Growing up, I envisioned the world differently, as I still do now – I have an abnormal love of community and an understanding that we all are intrinsically linked and connected. I saw at a young age that working together provided more opportunities for the greater good. I knew that when we face adversity and place our differences as a priority to divide us, we fail. If we take the time to work and authentically connect, we can build communities with a vulnerable heart that can supersede any obstacle. My goal in everything I do is to advocate for my childhood vision, working to connect our Santa Barbara County community towards a more progressive and equitable future. I work every day towards this goal, volunteering my time, providing my leadership and expertise, and I will apply that same energy as your Califonia Assembly District Delegate for District 37. Learn more about me and my work at

Jordan A. Killebrew

My names is James Kyriaco and I am proud to be part of the local Santa Barbara and Ventura County Progressive and Labor Alliance for Justice Slate for AD37!

I want to be your representative to the California State Democratic Party to bring years of experience, and progressive values to the organization that shapes our party platform and helps elect democrats across our diverse state.

I am an elected democrat serving the residents of the City of Goleta, where I have fought for the strongest inclusionary housing ordinance – 20% – in Santa Barbara County, and voted to support construction of new affordable rental housing.

I led the effort to create AD37’s first local Child Care Zoning Ordinance that reduces barriers and creates incentives for increased access to affordable, quality child care for working families.

I wrote Goleta’s resolution condemning White Supremacy & White Nationalism in 2019 and have led the fight for policing reform in Santa Barbara County to end use of the dangerous and controversial carotid restraints that have endangered and killed too many black and brown lives across the nation.

In response to the COVID-19 crisis I have pushed for more resources to keep people out of poverty and homelessness, leading to hundreds of thousands of dollars from our general fund to provide rental assistance, child care scholarships, and other financial support to help keep people housed, clothed and fed. I also supported both grant funding and zero-interest loans for small businesses struggling to stay open because of the pandemic.

In addition to my elected work I also volunteer on the board of CAUSE ACTION, a local organization dedicated to justice and equity, CommUnify – Santa Barbara County’s Head Start and Early Head Start agency, and am a former Nonprofit Executive Director and Development Director.

I would be honored to have your vote, and your vote for the rest of the AD37 Progressive Labor Alliance for Justice Slate.

James Kyriaco

My name is Wendy Santamaria and I am running to represent California’s 37th Assembly district in the 2021 ADEM election. As a first-generation college graduate and daughter of Mexican immigrants, I can tell you first hand how the current system does not favor people of color or folks from low-income backgrounds. The experiences and struggles I carry as part of my identity make it so I know what it is to live paycheck to paycheck, to struggle through trying to find affordable housing or to face scrutiny and discrimination. As a community organizer in Santa Barbara, I’ve learned how to advocate for my community at the local level, fighting for tenants’ rights, immigrant rights, workers’ rights, and environmental justice. Now I’m ready to take our voices to the state level.

We are in the midst of multiple crises: a health crisis, a climate crisis, and a social and racial justice crisis. Simply put, there is no reason why our communities should live in fear of police brutality, of ICE, of getting unjustly evicted, or of not being able to afford a medical emergency, such as contracting COVID, because we live paycheck to paycheck. We deserve more.

As an ADEM representing California’s 37th Assembly district, I am ready to bring your voice to the table, and ensure that our party puts the needs of marginalized and vulnerable communities first. With your vote, we will fight for a party platform that will advocate for living wages, an end to police brutality, affordable housing for all, a progressive approach to our health and climate crises, and most important of all: a platform that works for all of us, not just the 1%.

Wendy Santamaria

I’m running for ADEM because I believe we need to continue influence, and hold accountable, the new leadership we have elected for our country. I am a proud union member with SEIU-UHW serving as a Steward, Executive Board and Executive Committee member. I am a licensed vocational nurse working in Camarillo California and have lived in this district for 15 years. I am active in my community, most recently, I’ve engaged in lobbying to help legislators understand the need to pass SB 275 to ensure healthcare workers have the personal protective equipment (PPE) to safely care for themselves and their patients. I believe in fighting for racial and social justice. We must find a way to address and reduce excessive force used by our police – as a healthcare worker, I believe it is an issue of public health. I hope I can count on your vote to elect me – Micheula Fletchall to delegate by or on Jan 23rd!

Micheula Fletchall