People to Watch

People to Watch…

Mayor Lisa Gillmor

Lisa Gillmor’s Ethical Questions

santa-clara-mayor-lisa-gillmorThe recently appointed Mayor owns and operates a multi-million dollar real estate empire in Santa Clara and surrounding communities.

  • Her company is Gillmor & Associates and the company website lists real estate and property management in “residential sales, commercial sales and leasing, land sales and leasing, multi-family rentals as well as ranch management. “ (
  • The website further states her …” company has established its powerful reputation representing clients, from attorneys, judges, corporations and school districts…”
  • Gillmor was appointed Mayor earlier in 2016 by a vote of the other Santa Clara Council members. Public phone records and public calendars reveal numerous phone calls and meetings with a majority of these councilmembers prior to her appointment as Mayor. The evidence indicates that Gillmor may have solicited these other councilmembers to vote for her – which violates the Ralph M. Brown Act enacted into law to prevent government officials from discussing and deciding items prior to public hearings on actions of the government. It would mean that Gillmor acted illegally in soliciting votes to elect her Mayor by the City Council.
  • Further, Gillmor then lead the Council to appoint new Councilmember Kathy Watanabe to fill out Gillmor’s Council seat term. Public records reveal that Gillmor again violated the Ralph M. Brown Act by soliciting and meeting with a majority of Councilmembers to ensure Watanabe was appointed to the Council opening. Watanabe, a white woman and friend/ally of Gillmor’s, was appointed by a slim majority of Councilmembers who rejected the chance to appoint a number of qualified minority candidates to fill the opening. Santa Clara has never had a minority candidate serve on the City Council despite the City having several opportunities to appoint qualified minority candidates.
  • Further public disclosures of Gillmor’s private meetings and dealings with development interests where she mixes her city business with her private business interests will be revealed soon.

Debi Davis

Davis opposes Minimum Wage


  • Debi Davis is the only member of the Santa Clara City Council to vote against an increase in the minimum wage in Santa Clara. Davis voted against raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour in August 2015 (City of Santa Clara Council minutes). The vote was 5 in favor and only Davis voted against the minimum wage increase.
  • Davis voted to double her own City Council pay in July 2016. She also accumulates a city provided pension for being on the City Council.
  • Debi Davis’ husband, Bill – a Santa Clara City police officer – received a total compensation package in 2015 of over $260,000. Bill Davis was paid a salary of $117,000 in 2011 when Davis was first elected to office. Just 3 years later after Debi Davis was a member of the City Council, her husband’s total compensation increased to over $260,000.
  • Davis promised to reform public employee pensions when she ran for office in 2011 *(Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce questionnaire 2011).
  • Davis participated in the private conversations with Mayor Lisa Gillmor, who records indicate violated the Brown Act for clean and transparent government, when Gillmor was appointed Mayor and Kathy Watanabe was appointed to the City Council. Davis voted to appoint both Gillmor and Watanabe.
  • Davis supported a pay raise for the City Manager over $400,000, again while opposing a minimum wage increase in Santa Clara.

Tino Silva

tino-silva-at-podiumTino Silva lists his profession as a Human Resource Consultant.

Surprising Facts about Silva

  • Tino Silva’s claims he supports “Open, Honest, Transparent Government” yet when Tino Silva faced the horrific actions of a youth soccer coach hired by the organization where Silva was the President, Tino Silva kept quiet.
  • In 2009 and still today, Tino Silva is listed as the President of the Santa Clara Youth Soccer League.
  • In 2009, an assistant soccer coach, Ricardo Sanchez, Jr., hired by Silva and the Youth Soccer League, was arrested for child molestation of two girls, 13 and 16, who were members of teams of the Santa Clara Youth League. (San Jose Mercury News February 11, 2009).
  • Sanchez was charged with 5 felony counts relating to child molestation, was convicted and is now a registered sex offender.
  • According to the Mercury News, February 11, 2009, Tino Silva failed to notify the parents of children on the Youth Soccer teams for nearly a week after the arrest of Ricardo Sanchez, Jr.
  • When asked why he or the Youth Soccer League had failed to notify the parents, Tino Silva declined to comment (San Jose Mercury News February 11, 2009).
  • Additionally, Ricardo Sanchez Jr. had previously been convicted of theft in 2006. Silva let a convicted criminal work with and coach vulnerable children who ultimately ended up molesting two minor children.
  • When being open and honest was the most important to protect children, Tino Silva failed.

Sudhanshu Jain

Jain Supports Developers

  • In his first year on the planning commission, Sudhanshu Jain voted for every single development request, including enthusiastically backing two Irvine Company projects.
  • As a Planning Commissioner, Mr. Jain voted for projects that Santa Clara residents noted would cause more traffic and noise pollution.
  • Additionally, Mr. Jain broke his promise to recuse himself from votes where he had a conflict of interest.
  • Finally, Mr. Jain submitted potentially misleading information on his Planning Commission application.

Kathy Watanabe

Kathy Wantanabe is a person to Watch in Santa ClaraWatanabe is not Diversity

  • Despite her ethnic-sounding surname, Ms. Watanabe is not ethnic.
  • Santa Clara does not have a single member of an ethnic community on the City Council, despite the city’s population being 38 percent Asian and nearly 20 percent Hispanic.
  • Ms. Watanabe’s best qualification for this job seems to be her loyalty to Mayor Gillmor.