On November 8th, 2016, there will be an election for the new 2016 Mayor of Benicia, CA. For the past 9 years, Elizabeth Patterson has been the mayor of this East Bay town, but Vice Mayor Mark Hughes has thrown his hat in the ring.
Hughes grew up in San Francisco and has lived in Benicia for the past 35 years. His wife Michele and him raised their two children Kelly and Stephen in Benicia; both kids went through the Benicia school system. Before joining the city council, Hughes worked for PG&E as an executive. Hughes was voted onto the city council in 2005, and was elected Vice Mayor in 2014.
When asked what his main focus would be were he to get elected, Hughes discussed uniting the city council so that they may work effectively as a team. Aside from city council, he plans to work with the citizens of Benicia, so that they may focus on topics, such as the budget and working towards a brighter future for healthcare.
When asked how his previous experience with PG&E and city government would affect his role as mayor, Hughes explained that his former job experience and years of work with the city council will be useful in bringing a government and business perspective together. Hughes elaborated that he has earned the trust of those he works with, especially in Benicia.
As students of Benicia, we asked Hughes what he would do as mayor to support our school system. He recalled the years his children spent in the Benicia school system and his continued involvement. A big part of Hughes working with the school system, is supporting Prop 55. Along with monthly meetings with the district’s superintendent, Dr. Young.
Hughes described how he is striving to be different than the average politician.
“I want to get into politics without being a politician,” he expressed. He further elaborated that he deeply enjoys his job and would like to continue giving back to the community that has given him so much.
By Bailey Ilomin