By Jim Wynne and Arrow Santos
The San Clemente Chamber of Commerce has announced its official candidate endorsements for the 2022 San Clemente City Council election. Aaron Washington and Victor Cabral have been selected for this honor; the Chamber says to vote for Victor and Aaron!
Aaron Washington is a Navy veteran who served more than 35 years in the military and is running on a platform of proven leadership experience, a focus on public safety, and supporting small businesses.
With an eye on the importance of our beachside economy, Aaron’s down-to-earth grassroots approach and decades of military service make him a driven and effective leader to ensure a thriving community under his care.
He looks to improve the functioning of our local government operations to save our town money while addressing long, ongoing issues such as solving the need for a hospital and accessible emergency medical care and managing a resolution to the complexities around homelessness in San Clemente.
Victor Cabral is an experienced attorney and executive business leader, having worked for the U.S. Department of Justice and major national companies, including as vice president of public policy for Verizon.
Victor’s focus is on responsible government spending and advocates for accountability from San Clemente’s leaders. Like Aaron, Victor also takes a strong stance on public safety to offer a safe and secure future for all residents by working with our local law enforcement agencies.
Securing a new city manager while ensuring our town is pro-business and supportive of our many small businesses are campaign promises from Victor that the San Clemente Chamber of Commerce is confident to endorse.
The Chamber of Commerce takes the election process very seriously because of the potential impact new policies, or reversals on previous stances, could directly have on the local business community and the quality-of-life changes that could affect all the employees, customers, and citizens that live within our city.
With 10 candidates running for City Council and only three seats open for election, the SC Chamber of Commerce wanted to ensure a fair and comprehensive approach to determining which candidates would receive the backing of the Chamber.
This undertaking was an extensive procedure that aimed to explore and establish the abilities of each candidate and the anticipated results should they be elected to the City Council.
The Chamber conducted 30-minute in-person interviews with every candidate, with a panel of Chamber board members asking questions and scoring candidates based on pre-set criteria unknown to the candidates being interviewed.
Altogether, this stretched for five hours spread over two days. The scorecards consisted of 20 categories, with five points available per category. Criteria ranged from leadership qualities, communication skills, and past community service, and also covered areas such as self-awareness, maturity, and attitude toward business and development.
Based on the ratings for each section, a total score was calculated for each candidate. These scores were averaged between the Chamber board members serving as judges throughout this process.
These wide-ranging conversations and blind-scoring setup allowed the Chamber to reach their ultimate endorsements of Aaron and Victor.
The Chamber would like to thank all the candidates for participating in this process and looks forward to working closely with the winners of November’s election to bring continued prosperity, security, and happiness to San Clemente. Good luck, all!
Jim Wynne, president of WynneCRE, is a San Clemente local, San Onofre Surfing Club president, and father of five, who serves as the immediate past chairman for the San Clemente Chamber of Commerce. Arrow Santos is a San Clemente native, professional writer/photographer and marketing director of WynneCRE.