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November 6, 2018 — California General Election
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Special District

San Francisco Bay Area Rapid TransitCandidate for Director, District 4

Photo of Robert Raburn

Robert Raburn

Transportation Planner
62,526 votes (57.76%)Winning
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Improve BART’s aging core system to reduce crowding, increase capacity, and improve reliability by delivering new train cars and rebuilding the 46-year old BART infrastructure.
  • Reshape our urban centers by building vibrant mixed-use Transit Oriented Developments with affordable housing.
  • Emphasize crime prevention and cleanliness in budgets and policies to improve quality-of-life on BART.



Profession:Transportation Planner
Director District 4 (2018 President), SF Bay Area Rapid Transit (2010–current)
Board Member, Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority — Appointed position (2011–current)
Alternate Board Member, Alameda County Transportation Commission — Appointed position (2018–current)
Chair, Citizens Watchdog Committee, Alameda County Transportation Commission — Appointed position (2001–2010)


University of California, Berkeley Ph.D., Geography (Urban geography and Transportation) (1988)

Community Activities

Volunteer Board Member, Dimond Improvement Association (2004–current)
Classrooom Volunteer, Oakland Rotary KinderPrep (2013–current)
Volunteer Board Member, Circus Bella (2016–current)



BART Board President Robert Raburn was elected to the BART Board of Directors on November 2, 2010. Director Raburn represents District 4, which includes most of Oakland, the City of Alameda, and part of San Leandro. It is one of the most diverse districts represented on the BART Board. He is running for re-election to deliver the improvements that his earlier strategic decisions promise.


Director Raburn has a solid record of delivering meaningful changes at BART. In 2016 he successfully led BART’s efforts to rebuild the core system by passing Measure RR, a $3.5 billion Green Bond backed by over 70% of voters in BART’s three core counties. Raburn attended more than 150 public meetings to make sure that Measure RR funds are effectively and efficiently invested with strong citizen oversight to produce reliable service and reduce overcrowding. It marks a crowning achievement in a career devoted to improving life in our region.


Raburn came to the East Bay in 1979 to study transportation and urban geography at UC Berkeley, where he received a doctorate degree. He taught geography and urban planning for a decade at San José State University, and on behalf of Hispanic voting rights groups, served as an expert witness and drew political redistricting plans adopted by the U.S. Department of Justice.


Raburn led the East Bay Bicycle Coalition for much of his involvement with them from 1992 to 2010. His work led to the building of the bike path on the new Eastern Span of the Bay Bridge, and the removal of the “world’s shortest freeway” near Lake Merritt in Oakland.


A recognized leader in sustainable transit solutions, his work has influenced regional and state funding and policies on transportation planning and air quality.


For a decade prior to serving on the BART Board, Raburn chaired Alameda County’s Measure B Citizens Watchdog Committee, ensuring Measure B transportation tax funds were spent as promised to the voters. He helped draft the Measure B expenditure plan that was approved by voters in 2000. Raburn has also helped lead other successful local and regional ballot measures, raising $2.5 million in transportation funds for transit, pedestrian, and bicycle improvements along Fruitvale Avenue and helping to increase bicycle and pedestrian safety near various BART stations. His ideas for Safe Routes to Transit became part of a region-wide program when voters approved Regional Measure 2 in 2004.


Robert received the Clean Air Champion Award from the Bay Area Air District in 1995, the Stride & Ride Award from the California Bicycle Coalition in 2003, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission’s Excellent in Motion Award in 2004, and the Bay Area Business Roundtable’s Appreciation in 2014. As a staunch believer in community involvement, Robert enjoys volunteering at Allenwood Elementary and in the Dimond District near his home in Oakland where he has been recognized as a “Local Hero” in 2014 and again in 2016.

Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • Sierra Club
  • Alameda County Democratic Party
  • Building and Construction Trades Council of Alameda

Organizations (13)

  • League of Conservation Voters of the East Bay
  • Alameda County Democratic Lawyers Club
  • City of Alameda Democratic Club
  • Metropolitan Greater Oakland Democratic Club
  • East Bay Young Democrats
  • John George Democratic Club
  • East Bay Express
  • East Bay for Everyone
  • Asian Pacific American Democratic Caucus of Alameda County
  • San Francisco Chronicle
  • Black Young Democrats East Bay
  • Transport Oakland
  • Evolve California

Elected Officials (7)

  • Hon. Keith Carson, Alameda County Supervisor
  • Hon. Nate Miley, Alameda County Supervisor
  • Hon. Elsa Ortiz, AC Transit President
  • Hon. Chris Peeples, AC Transit Director
  • Hon. Noel Gallo, Oakland City Council
  • Hon. Malia Vella, City of Alameda Vice Mayor
  • Hon. Rebecca Kaplan, Oakland City Council

Individuals (14)

  • Bernard Ashcraft
  • Alice Lai Bitker, Former Alameda County Supervisor
  • Fred Blackwell
  • Kent Lewandowski
  • Alan Dones
  • Chris Igesias
  • Carol Levine
  • Jim Prola, Former San Leandro City Council
  • Sugiarto Loni
  • Midori Tabata
  • Jesus Vargas
  • Sandra Wong
  • Michael Willis
  • Jim Wunderman

Who else is running?

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