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March 3, 2020 — Primary Election
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Santa Barbara CountyCandidate for Supervisor, Supervisorial District 1

Photo of Laura Capps

Laura Capps

School Board Member, Santa Barbara Unified School District
13,403 votes (46.85%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Raise the bar on ethics by strengthening County regulations and enacting campaign finance reform with reasonable donation limits, more transparency, quarterly reporting.
  • Shift our county’s priorities to issues around poverty, climate safety, housing and homelessness.
  • Bring a balanced approach to cannabis by expanding the buffer zone around school, mandating a better odor abatement solution, placing limits on acreage per parcel, and reinforcing an audit of the cannabis farms.



Laura has devoted her career to public service and is passionate about making our community, and our country, the best it can be for everyone. She is an active and responsive member of the Santa Barbara School Board with a has a proven record of being a leader who listens. She’ll complete her term in 2020.

Laura was born and raised in Santa Barbara and is an alumna of our public schools  -- Roosevelt Elementary, Santa Barbara Jr. High School, Santa Barbara High School (go Dons!).  Laura holds a Masters with Distinction from the London School of Economics and a Bachelor of Arts with Distinction in History from UC Berkeley.

For the past 25 years, Laura’s work has been about forging a more environmentally sustainable future, combatting poverty, fighting for immigration reform, and supporting the rights of all people.  She began her career in government and public service in the Clinton White House, working first as an aide to White House Senior Advisor George Stephanopoulos and then as a speechwriter for President Clinton. She was Senator Ted Kennedy’s Communications Director in the U.S. Senate, serving as his primary spokesperson and developing strategic communications plans on a wide range of issues.  Laura was a senior aide on John Kerry’s presidential campaign, starting first as his Iowa Communications Director and then directing communications for the seven battleground states in the west during the general election. 

For over a decade, Laura has worked with national non-profit organizations, building a reputation as a respected advocate for environmental conservation and climate issues through senior positions at Ocean Conservancy and climate non-profit founded and chaired by Vice President Al Gore. Recently she has devoted much of her work to ending poverty in California with advocacy and outreach on the Earned Income Tax Credit, the strongest tool to alleviate poverty especially among working mothers.

Excited to share her knowledge and experience, Laura has taught college courses on Congress and politics at the University of California Washington Center.  She served as UC Berkeley's Director of Government Affairs, representing the campus both on the federal and state level.  She served multiple terms on the UC Berkeley Foundation Board of Trustees

It was with great joy that Laura returned back to her hometown, Santa Barbara, seven years ago, to raise her son Oscar, a third grader at Roosevelt Elementary, and give back to the community she loves.



Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

Laura Capps – President of Santa Barbara School Board, mother, small business owner, former president of the Community Environmental Council, and Santa Barbara local (go Dons!) – is running for Santa Barbara County 1st District Supervisor to make local government listen to the people again. Her vision for our county addresses our severe housing and homeless crisis, the need for better emergency and climate safety infrastructure, an overhaul on campaign finance, and fixing a botched cannabis ordinance.

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