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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
Local

City of Berkeley Rent Stabilization BoardCandidate for Commissioner

Photo of Leah Simon-Weisberg

Leah Simon-Weisberg

Tenant Attorney
30,286 votes (20.09%)Winning
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Strengthen tenant protections and ensure that the rent board is able to meet the needs of the community.
  • Work with the City Council, School Board and community land trusts to increase affordable housing opportunities for our teachers.
  • During the next four years, the present executive director of the Rent Board will retire. I take very seriously the importance of finding a new executive director to fill these very important shoes.

Experience

Experience

Profession:Tenants Rights Attorney
Legal Director, Tenants Together (2011–current)
Managing Attorney, Anti-Predatory Lending Practice and Foreclosure, Community Legal Services in East Palo Alto (2010–2011)
Co Executive Director and Litigation Attorney, Eviction Defense Network (2003–2010)
Staff Assistant, Senator Barbara Boxer (1997–1999)
Maternal Child Health Volunteer, Peace Corps (1994–1996)

Education

Northeastern University School of Law Juris Doctorate (J.D.) (2002)
Earlham College Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Peace and Global Studies (1993)

Community Activities

Membership and Malcolm X Fund Co-Chair, Malcolm X Elementary School PTA (2014–current)

Biography

Leah is one of California’s leading tenant rights attorneys. For the last 14 years, she has fought to safeguard existing rent control and just cause eviction protections. Leah has provided critical legal support to five Bay Area campaigns to pass new rent control laws; including writing comprehensive rent control measures that qualified for the Richmond and Alameda ballots this November.  Leah has been a Berkeley renter for 7 years and has a daughter at Malcolm X Elementary School.  She has been active in the Malcolm X Elementary PTA and is an advocate for teachers, families, equity and stability in Berkeley.

Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • Alameda County Democratic Party
  • Alameda Labor Council, AFL-CIO
  • The Sierra Club

Organizations (12)

  • Alameda County Democratic Party
  • Alameda County Green Party
  • Berkeley Citizens Action
  • Berkeley Progressive Alliance
  • Berkeley Tenants Union
  • Cal Democratic Club
  • East Bay Women's Political Caucus
  • Wellstone Renewal Democratic Club
  • John George Democratic Club
  • East Bay Young Democrats
  • Friends of Adeline
  • UFCW, Local 5

Elected Officials (14)

  • United States Senator Bernie Sanders
  • Sandre Swanson
  • Jesse Arreguin
  • Kris Worthington
  • Max Anderson
  • Kathy Harr
  • Lisa Stephens
  • Jesse Townley
  • James Chang
  • John Selawsky
  • Gayle McLaughlin
  • Richard Valle
  • Judy Appel
  • Beatriz Leyva-Cutler

Questions & Answers

Questions from League of Women Voters—Berkeley, Albany, Emeryville (2)

If you are elected, what would you like to achieve during your term in office?
Answer from Leah Simon-Weisberg:

I will participate in the hiring of an ideal new executive director.  I will work with BUSD, City Council and community land trusts to increase the amount of affordable housing opportunities for working families and teachers.  In addition, I will protect and fairly ordinance.

What do you consider the most important issue facing the Rent Control Board?
Answer from Leah Simon-Weisberg:

The impending retirement of the executive director I consider the most important issue facing the Berkeley Rent Board.  He is a renowned expert in the rent control world and has been an amazing leader both administratively and in terms of policy.  The rent board has seen 2000 more requests for assistance in the last 18 months and Berkeley is facing an unprecidendated housing crisis.  The Rent Board Commissioners will need to ensure that Berkeley will continue to have strong, capable and visionary leadership.   Who is on the board will determine the future of the board.

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