Third Consecutive Young Green elected to Napa Valley College Board of Trustees

Thursday, May 15, 2014

For three consecutive terms the Napa Valley College Board of Trustees will have a Green Student Trustee.

April Clary, 22, was elected in a May 14th-15th election, for a one year term through May 2015.

Clary follows young Greens Alex Shantz and Ruscal Cayangyang as Student Trustees going back to 2012. 

Clary has served as president of Napa Valley College Campus Greens and was a founding member of the Queer Student Alliance. She is only one of two openly LGTBQ elected officials in Napa County and the only one that identifies as gender queer.

"I am a Green because I believe we need a political alternative in this country. The Green Party, as a party that refuses corporate money and is committed to social justice, grassroots democracy, and environmental justice is that political alternative."

Elected unoppossed, one of Clary’s main campaign issues was affordable and healthy food for students on campus. According to the California Poverty Measure (developed by the Public Policy Institute of California, in partnership with the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality); which takes regional housing costs into account, Napa County has the 2nd highest poverty rate in California and 37% of adults suffer from food insecurity. These issues have a visible impact on students at Napa Valley College.

Clary will seek for the college to provide more affordable and healthy food for students, including local organic produce and more options for vegetarian and vegan students and staff. Her ideas include using the campus community garden to grow vegetables that can be distributed to students, or sold at low cost.   

Her platform also calls for social justice for marginalized students, environmental sustainability on campus and student democracy so students are engaged with the college’s decision making processes. 

In elections for the members of the Association Students board, young Greens elected include Angela Ituriaga as President and Gracy Ramirez as Senator of Inclusivity of the Associated Students of Napa Valley College (ASNVC). 

Ituriaga, a civil engineering major, served as public relations officer for ASNVC last year. Serving as public relations officer allowed her to see what students can accomplish in positions of power. This inspired her to run for president. At a recent candidates forum, her ideas for improving campus include building a solar panel walkway on campus and establish dual flushing for campus toilets.

Ramirez is a fierce and young activist in SEIU United Long Term Care Workers Local 6434. She recently organized with her union to demand a 50 cent raise from $11.50. She also helped gather signatures in Napa County to put Green candidate Luis Rodriguez on the ballot for Governor. As Senator of Inclusivity, she wants to inspire students to get political active and involved with diversity and social justice issues.  

A philosophy major with a concentration in Ethics, Politics, and Law, Shantz plans on transferring to Sacramento State Fall 2014. 

 

 

 

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