TAM TO RUN FOR COUNTY SUPES
City Councilwoman Lena Tam is set to run for the Alameda County Board of Supervisors seat being vacated by current board president Alice Lai-Bitker.
“I think right now, the best fit for my skills and interests is going to be at the regional level,” Tam said when The Island contacted her Tuesday to confirm she planned to make a bid for the seat.
The East Bay Citizen reported Saturday that Lai-Bitker was endorsing Tam over her predecessor and former boss, Wilma Chan, for the seat because she felt Tam would be the best candidate to continue her work on social services and development projects in South County. (Lai-Bitker also endorsed Tam for her council seat.)
Mayor Beverly Johnson has said she’s interested in running for the seat, and she told the Citizen she’ll make a decision in the coming weeks. The online newspaper reported that Assemblyman Sandré Swanson is also considering a run.
An official announcement is due out Wednesday. The primary for candidates for the seat will be in June.
During her time on the council, Tam has been active on state and regional issues. She was ultimately the council’s lone supporter of Measure B, SunCal’s ballot initiative to redevelop Alameda Point and has championed Alameda’s firefighters in their quest to maintain staffing and also a more transparent city government.
Tam’s council term expires in December, though she would be eligible to run for a second one. She had also mulled a run for the mayor’s seat, which Johnson will term out of in December.
Prior to joining the council, she served on the Alameda County Health Care District board and the Alameda County Planning Commission. She also served as president of the Alameda League of Women Voters. Tam works for the East Bay Municipal Utility District as their water resources planning manager.
Lai-Bitker stunned colleagues and staffers when she announced in January she didn’t plan to seek another term on the board in November, after serving for a decade.