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Cheryl Sudduth, AD15 Candidate, Says She is “Unbou...

Cheryl Sudduth, AD15 Candidate, Says She is “Unbought and Unbreakable”

 

Cheryl Sudduth isn’t your typical political candidate. She presents a much-needed voice in politics, dedicated to social & economic equity, racial justice, educational system evolution, and civil & human rights. An experienced policy advocate and scientist, Sudduth has established a stellar reputation for ethical & unwavering advocacy for the unrepresented/underrepresented. She has garnered local, national and international acclaim for her advocacy and leadership.

“When we walk the halls of Sacramento or DC, you rarely see anyone who looks like me,” said Sudduth.  “Certainly there are women, even Black or Brown or LGBT women – sparse in number as it may be. Yet, what you don’t see are Hijabi Muslimah women or women of color with [visibly] significant disabilities or any combination thereof.”

Sudduth is one of a dozen candidates vying for the open California State Assembly District 15 seat. However,  Sudduth says her blend of unwavering integrity, strong corporate leadership, government contracting & compliance experience with an environmental science background makes her the best candidate.

“For too long, Black women and Brown women have been the backbone of our communities and our country, working as activists and organizers yet denied seats at the decision-making table,” she said.

“Así, si no estás sentado a la mesa, no se pueden establecer las prioridades o la agenda y verdad, si no estás sentado a la mesa, o estás en el menú o alguien que está ordenando para usted. {If you are not seated at the table, you cannot set the priorities or the agenda and, truthfully, if you’re not seated at the table, you are either on the menu or someone is ordering for you.},” she explained.

But Sudduth wants more than just the obligatory seat at the table or a token representation.  She wants to ensure the voices of the people are heard and accounted for, at all levels of governance.

“We must ensure anyone claiming to represent our Black and Brown communities are actually of our communities and doing the work in our communities – not just talking more rhetoric then voting in concert with those who haven’t our best interests at the forefront.”

For Sudduth, it’s about having someone  who stands up for people in the middle class and those struggling to get there.  Someone like her, who chose to leave a corporate career to work  in East Oakland, helping create job opportunities for those with disAbilities and disadvantaging conditions. It’s having someone who is unafraid to speak truth to power and fight to protect the rights of all people.

Sudduth has done this consistently through her award-winning work negotiating multinational agreements and training international sales teams at Sony, Siebel and Goodwill.

“My work at Goodwill proved we can employ people from these marginalized communities, provide on-the-job training and pay good wages (averaging $14.89/hr for unskilled labor, $22.60/hr for skilled labor) plus benefits (~$4.36/hr),” said Sudduth.  “Without economic opportunity, many of us lack the will and the confidence to speak up so we are left without a voice. My goal has always been to help people find that voice and help be the conduit to deliver that voice where the needs of the People are communicated, heard and addressed.”

Whether professionally or through grassroots organizing with the ACLU, CCRJC, CCIRA, NAACP, BWOPA or CCISCO, she has been directly involved in efforts to reduce racial disparities in the criminal justice system, evolution of the education system, fair & just immigration policies economic security, housing stability, and environmental justice.

She was also frontline in the fight against the closure of Doctors Hospital in Richmond, to protect Berkeley’s Alta-Bates, immigrant rights and against the Richmond jail expansion.

“I’ve been doing this work a long time. I’ve this incredible sense of fairness and need for seeking just outcomes,” said Sudduth. “I believe that economic opportunity is a fundamental social justice issue.”

And she hopes to bring people power to Sacramento, through the creation of Community Council, comprised of a grassroots community representatives who will serve as advisors and aides.

“In the disAbility community, we have a saying – ‘nothing about us without us’. I use this view in every aspect of my decision-making. At every level, I want to know the concerns/input of the persons impacted by the decisions (either directly or indirectly). The Council will keep me honest as la Voz de la Gente / the Voice of the People,” says Sudduth. “That, is how I define true People-led leadership.”

The Primary Election for the AD15 race takes place on June 5th. For more information about Cheryl Sudduth, visit  http://cherylsudduthforassembly.com


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