Voter’s Edge California
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Presentado por
League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
California Common Cause@CommonCauseCA
June 5, 2018 — Elecciones Primarias de California

Condado de OrangeCandidato para Supervisor, Distrito 4

Photo de Joe Kerr

Joe Kerr

Retired Fire Captain
17,717 votos (20.1%)
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Mis 3 prioridades principales

  • Make sure that Orange County gets more funding back from the State of California so that we can invest in solutions to the problems that we as a County face.
  • Reduce homelessness by expanding access to housing and comprehensive social services.
  • Fight for a living wage in Orange County .



Profesión:Retired Fire Captain
President, Orange County Professional Firefighters Association IAFF Local 3631 (1995–2012)
Board Member, Workforce Investment Board — Cargo designado (2002–2003)
Firefighter/EMT/Fire Captain, Orange County Fire Department (1978–1995)


Santa Ana College Fire Command, Fire Prevention, Fire Suppression, Building Construction, Emergency Medical Technician (2012)
California State University Long Beach Organizational Management, Organizational Management (2008)
Harvard University Harvard Trade Union Program, Harvard Trade Union Program (2005)
National Fire Academy Fire Management, Fire Management (1983)
Cypress College General Education (1980)

Actividades comunitarias

Vice President, California Professional Firefighters Association (CPF) (2000–2015)
Board Member, Orange County Foundation For Oncology, Children, and Families (OCF-OCF) (1985–1988)


Joe Kerr is a second-generation firefighter who served as a Fire Captain with the Orange County Fire Authority and the Orange County Fire Department for over 25 years. Joe originally lived in Fullerton when his family moved here from New York and then moved to La Habra, where he attended school, played flag football, and little league baseball. He was a member of the La Habra Boys Club and fished with his brothers at Lake Bastanchury (now called Lake Laguna) in the Sunny Hills portion of Fullerton almost every weekend during the summer. Joe and his family belonged to the Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in La Habra where he received his first communion.

When Joe was a young teenager, he joined the Cypress Volunteer Fire Department like his dad before him. He responded to emergencies within the cities of Cypress, La Palma, Buena Park, and West Anaheim. Joe graduated from Cypress High School within the Anaheim Union High School district and attended the Fire Academy Tower right across the street from Angel's Stadium. Joe has been engaged in nearly every major fire incident that has affected North and West Orange County since the late 1970s.

Joe was awarded Fireman of the Year by the Cypress Fire Department in 1979, Overachiever of the Year by the Orange County Firemen's Association in 1984, and Fire Captain of the Year by the Orange County Fire Department in 1986. In 1981, he was given a Certificate of Merit from the Orange County Board of Supervisors for his role while responding to the Air California jetliner crash at John Wayne Airport. Joe was also presented with the Courage Under Fire Award in 1999 for rescuing and reviving a non-breathing occupant who was trapped in a residential structure fire. In 2012 after retiring, Joe received numerous awards and recognitions for helping save the life of a baby who was drowning and had stopped breathing in a swimming pool.

Joe's history of community service includes having served as an advisor to the Board of the Orange County Foundation for Oncology, Children and Families (OCF-OCF).

Joe and his wife, China, are the proud parents of a 13-year old son.

¿Quién apoya a este candidato?

Organizaciónes (1)

  • Orange County Professional Firefighters Association

Funcionarios electos (4)

  • Congressman Lou Correa
  • State Assemblymember Sharon Quirk-Silva
  • Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (Ret.)
  • State Senator Joe Dunn (Ret.)

Preguntas y Respuestas

Preguntas de The League of Women Voters of California Education Fund and the League of Women Voters of Orange Coast (1)

  According to a “Civility in America” survey, 75% of Americans believe that the U.S. has a major civility question. If you are elected what will you do to address this?  
Respuesta de Joe Kerr:

As a labor leader in Orange County for several decades, I had to learn to work with people from both sides of the aisle. I cooperated with people on public safety that I may have had fierce disagreements about other issues impacting our County because that was the right thing to do and protecting the safety of our residents is our first priority. I have always treated those who I work alongside with the upmost respect and consideration. While I may disagree with members of the Orange County Board of Supervisors on a number of issues, most of the time, the disagreements are not about what we want for the County, but how we get there. While I recognize that I may often have the only differing opinion on the Board of Supervisors if I am elected, I am committed to maintaining the highest level of civility in our County government.

Preguntas de The League of Women Voters of North Orange County (3)

Question 2


What is at the heart of the immigration issue for you?


No se proporcionó respuesta.
  What do you think is contributing to homelessness right now?  What do you expect from your city, county, state, or federal government with regards to homelessness?  
Respuesta de Joe Kerr:

Homelessness has many different causes and likewise, will require many different solutions. For the long term, we need to build more affordable housing units to expand access to housing and we need to promote a program that identifies people who are at-risk of becoming homeless to help keep them in their homes. Orange County needs to adopt a Housing First model that connects people to either permanent supportive housing or rapid re-housing programs that help them find a job, control their addiction, or handle their mental illness. The County has millions of unspent money from the state that can be used to build permanent supportive housing, shelters, and to expand our continuum of care of partnerships with nonprofits and transitionary housing providers. The Orange County Housing Trust is an interesting idea that will hopefully free up funds to be used for such projects, although we will need to make sure we know exactly how much money the Trust is raising and exactly where it is going. The bottom line is that a Housing First model is the cheapest, most effective, and most humane way of solving the issue. Orange County needs to be building more permanent supportive housing, affordable housing, and rapid re-housing programs for those who are suffering from homelessness.

Question 4


In 2017, the Orange County Board of Supervisors voted against conducting the vote center model for the 2018 election although authorized under the Voter's Choice Act.  If elected, would you support implementation of this law for Orange County beginning with the 2020 election; why or why not?


No se proporcionó respuesta.

Creencias poliza

Filosofía política

Fundamentally, Joe Kerr believes that we are stronger together. That is why he will be spending his career helping communities, solving our homelessness crisis with compassion, ensuring public safety, guaranteeing workers a living wage, using collective bargaining to advance workers' rights, ensuring equality for women and members of the LGBTQ+ community, and elevating the voices of all marginalized communities.

However, at the end of the day, Joe is a pragmatist. Being an Orange County Supervisor is not about enacting one's own rigid political philosophy, it's about coming up with practical solutions to the issues people face every day and managing the social services network that the County has access to. That means solving our homelessness crisis by adopting a Housing First model, proven to be the cheapest and most effective way of reducing homelessness. That means investing in early childhood education programs and after-school programs to make sure kids have a world-class education. That means increasing the transparency of our County government to make sure that they are using our tax dollars responsibly. 

Videos (1)

Filmed at the ACLU Candidates Forum in Anaheim.

Información de contacto del candidato

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