La Jolla Councilwoman Barbara Bry formally announced on January 2 her intent to run in the 2020 mayoral race. She is the first candidate to formally declare.
Bry, a registered Democrat, first ran for San Diego City Council in 2016. She came in first place in the 2016 June primary, after running on a campaign centered around keeping San Diego “safe, clean and prosperous.” However, she did not acquire the 50-percent majority required to prevent a runoff election. She and her Republican opponent Ray Ellis were set to face off in the November 2016 general election until he withdrew from the race in August of 2016, citing the lack of a “viable path to [his] victory.”
The San Diego City Council Race was Bry’s first time running for public office. Prior to running for office, she served as founding editor in chief and CEO of local news publication Voice of San Diego. She also founded local venture capitalist firm Blackbird Ventures with her husband Neil Senturia. While working as CEO of Blackbird Ventures, she founded two organizations: Athena San Diego, a non-profit dedicated to empowering women in STEM, and Run Women Run, a non-partisan organization committed to getting women elected and appointed to office.
As San Diego City Councilwoman, Bry represents Council District 1, which includes Carmel Valley, La Jolla, Torrey Pines & Hills, the Pacific Highlands, and UC San Diego. She also serves as Council President Pro-Tempore and Chair of the Committee on Budget and Government Efficiency.
As a member of the city council, she has supported legislation installing a fire-station at UCSD, banning polystyrene in San Diego, banning electric scooters on San Diego County Boardwalks, and regulating dock-less scooters.
Furthermore, Bry has also criticized City Officials for overspending on offices, In November 2017, she voted against having a special election to expand the convention center downtown and opposed both the building of a homeless navigation center and development of SoccerCity.
In her campaign announcement video, Bry touted her experience as a female entrepreneur and shared her vision for San Diego.
“I was a white women with a Harvard MBA [Masters of Business Administration], so I had a lot of doors that were open to me that are not open to a lot of people in San Diego,” she stated.”…And I want to make sure they get the same opportunities that I had.”
When The Triton reached out, the Executive Board of UCSD College Republicans expressed their opposition against Bry’s mayoral candidacy.
“Councilwoman Bry and the Democrats on the council have repeatedly voted against San Diego taxpayers, homeowners, and employers. Her time in the council is benchmarked not by serving the people of the 1st District, but by pushing an ideological tax and spend agenda,” the board responded. “The College Republicans at UCSD are committed to supporting a mayoral candidate that continues the pragmatic work that Mayor Faulconer has championed; Councilwoman Bry falls very short of that message.”
UCSD College Democrats declined to comment when The Triton reached out.
Tajairi Neuson is a Staff Writer for The Triton. You can follow him @tajairi