California State Senator Brian Jones is one of the “good guys” in elective office. Despite being an elected official since 2002, Brian is down-to-earth, approachable and engaging. In his recent race for Congress, people I know described him as “the candidate you’d most like to have over to dinner.” It’s easy to see why from this Edgy Interview, but now I know he’s also the guy to ride mountain bikes with. Read more
Craig Benedetto has been a fixture in San Diego’s civic landscape for decades. He and his firm, California Strategies, take on a diverse range of projects and work hard. Craig’s deep background in land-use issues stems from a rich set of experiences forged at the Building Industry Association, the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce and his work with local, state and federal elected officials. He’s one of the good guys in politics who gets personally involved in local causes.
Example: Craig was recognized by BOMA San Diego for his efforts on behalf of commercial real estate during COVID. He’s also a dedicated family man who can be found on the links on any given Sunday with his young son. Or maybe Craig and his lovely wife Melanie will be travelling off to Italy or Africa or Central America. Craig is one of those people who wrings the most out of life and then uses his experiences to broaden his horizons. Read more
My phone was blowing up on election night and for a few days afterwards with texts like the one above. I get it. Every presidential election is touted as the “most important of our lifetime,” at least until four years later. Who knows, maybe they were right this time. And people are right to take elections, and polling, seriously. In fact, neither side in this 2020 general election is satisfied. Read more
A San Diego Union-Tribune reporter in a previous life, I met Tony Manolatos while he served as Communications Director for then-Councilman Kevin Faulconer. So Tony is one of those savvy San Diego City Hall veterans with a background in journalism. Probably more important to his success in campaigns and elections, Tony has a knack for putting together and managing crack teams of professionals who work in synch to move the needle for his clients. It’s not easy balancing client demands with diverse talents, but that’s what he does at his brand-new firm Manolatos Public Affairs. Read more
There’s a longer story here — and I’ll relate it some day — about Byron’s first run for City Council and Competitive Edge’s role in it. For now I’ll leave it at “it was CERC’s very first project, we were hired by the other side (the Kay Davis campaign) and we learned very valuable lessons.” Despite his defeat in that race at the hands of another friend-of-CERC Ron Roberts, Byron eventually persevered to become San Diego’s 2nd District City Councilman. He served two terms which included two years as Deputy Mayor. Byron remains active in community affairs and he’s pushing to revitalize San Diego’s Midway District. Read more