More info on Hayward City Council candidates

UPDATE: Here’s the story.

Our  story on who’s running for Hayward City Council come June should be posting online soon. And as promised at the end of the story, you can find more information on each candidate here, as collected from the City Clerk’s Office, candidate statements, websites and interviews. Candidates in order per Secretary of State’s randomized alphabet, starting after the jump.

Shahla Azimi

Residence: Fallbrook Drive. Lived in Hayward more than 14 years.

Job: Works for City of Oakland as a revenue analyst.

Education: MA in public administration, Cal State East Bay.

Hobbies: Reading, drawing, baking.

Financial disclosures: None.

Azimi said that she’s very passionate about the city, and “just wants to see Hayward like other cities.” She wants positive changes in schools and businesses. She said the council can convey frustrations and put pressure on the school board, and wants to foster a business climate that will encourage people to spend money in the city and not in Fremont or Pleasanton. She said she is very personable and brings strong budgetary skills to the table, and wants to work toward developing new sources of city revenue.

Website: None at this time.

Francisco Zermeño

Residence: Sleepy Hollow Avenue.

Experience: City Council since 2008. Planning commission, 1999 to 2007, Library Commission, 1998, task force on Hayward Public Library, 1996.

Job: Council member. Spanish professor at Chabot College since 1978. Former owner of Z Video, now runs home business Terlingua Translation with his wife, Elisabeth.

Education: MA in Spanish from UC Santa Barbara. Two years ROTC.

Hobbies: Reading, writing, Spiderman, family, Hayward.

Financial disclosures: Terlingua Translation. Gifts: Tri-Ced Recycling, $200 tickets for fundraiser. Firefighters Local 1909, $100 tickets for fundraiser.

Statement: Councilman, Educator, Businessman.

Hayward, the Bay Area’s 5th largest, the Heart of the Bay, is the city I love, and the one for which I have spent, and will spend all of my energy to keep safe and prosperous. All of the decisions I make as your city councilman are with the very best interests of our city, and you, my neighbors, in mind. Four years ago, I promised to help make Hayward safer, friendlier to small businesses, and to improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods. By working together with my council colleagues, city employees and you, we have been able to weather the recession without sacrificing public safety. We have made it easier to start up a business. And we have focused on bringing the community together to help our local schools. There is more to do. You deserve to be safe on your way to work, school, home or play. You deserve a clean environment, with more trees and free of garbage and graffiti. Of course, we need to continue to revitalize our local economy. With your trust, I will continue to work diligently towards an Economically Vital, Safe, Clean, and Green City. I thank you warmly! Hayward on!

Website: www.zermeno.com

Fahim Ajaz Khan

Age: 28

Residence: Pompano Avenue. Lived in Hayward 28 years.

Job: Console operator at A&M Industries in Pleasanton. Started his own business aimed at real estate investing and rental properties. Nonprofit volunteer.

Education: Tennyson High, some Cal State East Bay.

Hobbies: Investments, reading Wall Street Journal, movies, exercising, real estate, cars, etc.

Financial disclosures: None.

Khan said he’s wanted to be on the City Council for most of his life, and “knows more about Hayward” than other candidates. He said education and job creation need to be at the forefront of priorities, as improvements in those areas would make the city more attractive. Test scores must improve, he said, and while he understands the school board is directly in charge of Hayward Unified, he would like to “try to conjoin” the board and council to work together. He said he is “an aspiring young entrepreneur trying to make something of himself.”

Website: Under construction.

Greg Jones

Age: 49

Residence: Prospect Street, lived in Hayward 4 ½ years.

Experience: City manager of Hayward from 2007 to 2010. Also served as city manager in Chico and assistant city manager in Concord.

Job: Owner of Realty World Neighbors in Hayward.

Education: BS in business administration, MPA, United States Air Force officer from 1983 to 1990, serving as a navigator.

Hobbies: Running, reading, movies, travel.

Financial disclosures: Gift of $750 from Women’s Council of Realtors for TriCities for attending state meeting.


As a navigator in the United States Air Force, I learned how to set clear goals, chart a direct course, understand the limits of resources and overcome obstacles. While serving as Hayward’s City Manager, I used my training to set our city on a course of fiscal discipline, quality service and active community involvement. I worked with the City Council and our neighborhoods to establish two basic goals: Crime Prevention and City Cleanliness. That’s because we should at least help to make people feel safe and proud of their city. A safer and cleaner Hayward will attract new investment and create jobs. I’m running for City Council because I believe that Hayward can benefit from my in-depth understanding of government finance. Hayward will benefit from my labor-relations experience working with employee groups as they struggle to best serve every neighborhood despite shrinking resources. Hayward will benefit from my ability and passion to continue working with our community on youth, education and arts programs by developing stronger, bolder, more effective policies. Please review my record and vision for Hayward at www.GregJonesForHayward.com or call me at 510-886-GREG (4734). I hope you’ll find me worthy of your vote. Thank you!

Website: www.gregjonesforhayward.com

Barbara Halliday

Age: 62

Residence: Lindenwood Way. Lived in Hayward for 26 years.

Experience: Been on City Council since 2004. Served on Planning Commission from 1996 to 2004. Citizen’s Advisory Commission from 1990-1996. 880/92 Interchange Citizens Advisory Committee from 1991-2002.

Job: Council member, retired medical liability claims professional, from 1979 to 2008. Journalist/public affairs writer from 1972-1979.

Education: BA in American Studies fromUniversity of Virginia, graduate student in journalism and urban studies at the University of Maryland.

Financial disclosures: Principal Financial Group, variable annuity. Stock in Hewlett Packard. Farm property rental in Minnesota. Gifts of golf tournament tickets from Steve Miller worth $290, Mary Hayashi political dinner on Oct. 1 worth $75.

Hobbies: Piano, scrapbooking, hiking, skiing.


As a Council Member, I’ve focused on strengthening neighborhoods, reducing crime, enhancing our environment, revitalizing downtown, and serving children and youth. Working together, we’ve made great progress. I supported neighborhood partnerships throughout the city, reducing crime, blight and vandalism and giving residents tools to get more prompt and effective service from city departments. I voted to bring police closer to people by opening substations in north and southHayward, and I supported anti-gang efforts that led to multiple arrests and less crime. I helped enact measures to reduce pollution and make our buildings greener, joined monthly efforts to clean up litter, and supported street fairs and family events bringing diners and shoppers downtown. I’ve advocated for our library and the volunteers it attracts to help people of all ages learn to read. Our Homework Support Center, funded with grants and operated with volunteers including myself, has already helped boost HUSD scores. As part of the team that has kept Hayward moving forward through tough times, I believe I have the proven experience to work effectively on the challenges ahead and help Hayward achieve even more success over the next four years. I’d be honored to have your support.

Website: www.HallidayForHayward.com.

Olden Henson

Residence: Silver Maple Lane, 33 years in Hayward.

Experience: Council member since 1994. Planning Commission, 1991-1994; Mayor’s Task Force on Schools, 1993-1994; Citizens Advisory Commission, 1987-1991; Hayward Citizens for Rent Relief, 1978.

Job: Council member.  Self-employed software consultant, specializing in outside encryption.
Education: MS in Physics, University of Pennsylvania.

Hobbies: Web surfing, reading, church activities.

Financial disclosures: Owns G.E. stock, contract employee for Advanced Consultant (Symantec) in Las Vegas. Assistant administrator at Windsor Medical Corp in Fremont, owns property in Lovelock, Nevada. Gifts of $50 for charity dinner from firefighters union.


I have three priorities for reelection as your City Council representative: 1) economic development, including job creation; 2) establishing a gang injunction policy and process that prevents gang activities; and 3) a strong collaborative approach with our school district focusing on district wide performance improvement. Doing so will not only help our students, but will bolster families, safety, improve our economy and the city’s future. Additionally, I am now developing a sister city partnership with Lujhu,Taiwan that will allow for economic investment in Hayward, an educational and cultural exchange, and a technological partnership that will enhance the growth of our 30 plus biotechnology companies. I helped created a free student transit pass for our kids. As a national expert on first responder communication, I am endorsed by the Hayward firefighters. Communication is critically important for this community’s safety. Hayward can be the community we want it to be and I, as your Council Member will lead the effort to make these priorities functional living examples. Thank you for the honor and privilege of serving you. Reelect your Council Member Olden Henson on June 5, 2012.

Website: www.henson4hayward.com

Al Mendall

Age: 39

Residence: Brookside Lane

Experience: Planning Commissioner for 6.5 years. Sustainability Committee member since 2007. Previously on Citizens Advisory Commission, 2001-2006, co-chair of Campain $olutions for Hayward.

Job: Works as a software developer at Interactive Data Corp in Hayward,

Education: BS in computer science at UCLA in 1995.

Financial disclosures: Owns stock in Pfizer, First Solar, St. Joe Corp. (Florida real estate co.), Western Union, Exelon, Applied Material, U.S. Bancorp, Berkshire Hathaway, International Speedway Corp. Rental property in Lincoln.

Statement: My education and qualifications are:

Hayward is a great city – the “Heart of the Bay.” That’s why I’ve been serving Hayward for over a decade: as a community volunteer, Planning Commissioner, Citizens Advisory Commissioner, and on the Sustainability Committee. I work in Hayward, my wife and I purchased our first home here, and we’ve chosen to raise our young children here. On the Planning Commission, I’ve worked closely with many current and prospective business owners, pushed for more collaboration with the community on development, and fought for more parks, open space, and greener, smarter, transit-oriented development. My priorities as your Councilmember will be: Maintaining staffing levels for police and fire and making Hayward safer, simplifying the business permitting process and creating incentives for businesses to invest here and create jobs and shopping opportunities, making genuine improvements in Hayward’s appearance by combating blight, putting Hayward on a more sustainable path both fiscally and environmentally, and making Hayward a more youth-friendly city. I appreciate the support I’ve received from the Hayward Firefighters and Police Officers, former Sheriff Charlie Plummer, Mayor Mike Sweeney, Councilmembers Marvin Peixoto, Bill Quirk and many more.

Website: www.AlForHayward.com.

Peter Bufete

Age: 22

Residence: Gleneagle Ave., 10 years inHayward.

Experience: ASB president at Hayward High. College Leadership Fraternity.

Job: First aid and CPR certification instructor at own business, Bay Area First Aid & CPR Training. Works for HARD at Mission Hills Golf Course, senior advisor at Elderly Health Care Services, volunteer elderly caregiver.

Education: BA in Political Science at UCSB.

Hobbies: Golf and Cooking.

Financial disclosures: None

Excerpts from website:

When I heard about the 4 open seats for Hayward City Council, I noticed that none of the candidates really shared my perspective on Hayward issues. That motivated me to join the election. I believe that Hayward Education is in a crisis and needs the collaborative effort of both the City Council as well as the School Board to resolve the issues. I believe that the longevity of our city lies in motivating Young Hayward to become more politically involved and active in the community. I believe that public safety and that the health of our citizens must be a priority. I also believe that Hayward can do a better job stimulating the local economy and at the same time becoming more sustainable. … I am fully committed to develop and implement a well-designed gang injunction program. … I believe that I best represent the young adult population that is fresh out of college and looking to make the world a better place. My vision is to see more entertainment venues, more student hot spots, and a better night scene in our downtown.

Website: http://peterbufete.com/


Ralph Farias Jr.

Age: 30

Residence: Belmont Avenue, 20 years in Hayward.

Job: Self-employed food, beverages and spirits broker.

Education: Tennyson High, Hayward High, Chabot, Michigan State University.

Hobbies: Photography, traveling.

Financial disclosures: None

From website:

My name is Ralph Farias Jr. I am running for Hayward City Council for the Second time because there hasn’t been much change within the past few years in Hayward. Our City has an increasing public safety problem, from an increase of Assaults, Burglaries/ Thefts. Also Hayward has a large amount of Vacant Business fronts, a major BLVD (Mission) that has a major vacancy Problem. Our Economic growth in our city has been a major disappointment to many of the residents of our fine city. I feel that with my strong BUSINESS background and my dedication I can bring Hayward back to its glory days. I am not one of those politicians who tells you one thing and when elected goes the other direction. I believe politicians are supposed to represent the citizens and not stroke their ego! I will not pull any punches and I will be straight forward with everyone. Together we can make Hayward a place that can attract businesses and residents, where they can send their children to attend school. I ask you for your support and am EAGER to serve you.

Website: www.wewantralph.com

Eric Kurhi