Sunne McPeak denies gubernatorial ambitions

Sunne Wright McPeak

Sunne Wright McPeak

My esteemed colleague and fellow political writer Carla Marinucci at the San Francisco Chronicle blogged yesterday that former Contra Costa County Supervisor Sunne Wright McPeak is rumored to be a potential 2010 Democratic gubernatorial candidate.

While McPeak’s credentials for such an undertaking are numerous, the Pleasanton resident told me last night that “if I ever decided to take leave of my mind and do something like that, I’ll come see you for counseling.” (To all the professional counselors out there, no need to worry. I never charge for my services.)

As you may recall, McPeak left her post as chief of the Bay Area Council to serve as state Secretary for Business, Transportation and Housing under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. She left to take a job as CEO and president of the California Emerging Technology Fund, an organization charged with spending $60 million in seed cash to close the digital divide in California. The Fund launches its public education campaign today.  (Click here to see my story about the fund.)

McPeak has remained largely quiet about her experience as one of Schwarzenegger’s cabinet members but sources close to her say the highly goal-oriented leader was beyond frustrated with how Sacramento’s hyper-politicized environment impeded progress on multiple levels.

The suggestion that McPeak, who hasn’t held public office in decades, would undertake a campaign for arguably the most politically charged jobs in California sounds nuts.

On the other hand, McPeak has been heavily involved in a group called California Forward. It’s a bipartisan organization calling for the reform of California’s Constitution as a way to solve the state’s massive structural fiscal problems.

In conjunction with legislative reforms, some folks are even talking about forming a third political party that would emphasize results over ideology.

With McPeak’s business background, socially liberal politics and her well-known interest in results over dogma, it’s not hard to see why her name has surfaced as a gubernatorial candidate. The bigger question is whether or not McPeak is interested in reentering politics.

Lisa Vorderbrueggen