tv Womens Equality Day Celebration SFGTV September 24, 2020 6:00am-7:01am PDT
>> i am vivian coe. carman chu co-founded the challenge along in 2018, along with the department on the status of women, as well as the league of women voters in san francisco. our mission is to raise women's voices and their voting power. you can learn more about our initiative on our website wchallenge.org. before we start, i would like to thank our w challenge partners and supports and occur co-hosts -- and our co-hosts listed in the shared screen before. for organizing today's event, as
well as kicking off a social media campaign as this year's challenge. we want to encourage more women to vote, especially for this upcoming election. we'll share more details later on in the program. you can learn more about the initiative on wchallenge.org 100 women. today's event will stream live on sfgovtv.org youtube channel, as well as the city's facebook and twitter accounts. i want to thank our colleagues here from sfgov tv for working in the backgrounds and making this event as successful as possible for everyone. you can feel free to share the links and host a watch party if you want on your preferred social media platforms, because we will be having them on facebook and twitter. this session will be recorded for future references.
so let's get started. happy women's equality day. may i kindly ask the president of the commission on the status of women to join us, bree anna swat, to officially kickstart the celebration of today's event. thank you. >> thank you so much, vivian, for the kind introduction. and really thank you to all staff for making this happen. i know we would normally be on the steps of stahl. but i appreciate everyone's creativity and flexibility of making this a virtual event as well. my name is brianna and i'm privileged to serve as the president of the nation's strongest commission and department on the status of women, right here in san francisco. it was on this day 100 years ago that the 19th amendment was added to the constitution of the united states. in the process of extending the right to vote to women across the country. and on november 2nd, 1920, more
than 8 million women voted for the first time in the presidential election. the moment was a culmination of a movement made with tears, pain, sweat, a long strug that will included activism and leadership of black, indigenous, and women of color, too many who who were later written out of history books. these women, who fought, marched, organized and protested for decades to gain the right to vote. we are right to celebrate this day as a milestone and recognize that equal votes rights were not achieved for all women through the 19th amendment. the voting rights act, passed 55 years ago, brought us closer to equal voting rights. however, the struggle continues. and the need for vigilance goes on. as we were reminded in '21, when the supreme court gutted, these attacks on the democracy continue through this very hour, the tactics evolve. but honestly the intent remains the same. it was once literacy test, and
outright violent intimidation. today we see the closing of polling places in communities of color be and attacks on voting by mail. in short, the fight continues on for the right to vote. today is more than a day of celebration, but to continue in the struggle and the moment to look ahead to the next 100 yea years. and 9 moment to ensure our democracy is truly representative. over the last century, women have also fought to gain access in classrooms, board room, and elected it office, -- elected office. we have seen the power of women's leadership with each advance. we see that diverse voices and perspectives, equity and inclusion bring new ideas, new insights to the halls of power. we've seen that right here from our vantage point in san francisco, with our own representative nancy pelosi, the first and only woman to serve as
speaker of the house, our two female senators and now vice presidential candidate kamala harris. as i said earlier, i wish we could all be gathered in person together. this is not how anyone could have imagined 2020 would look. but it also reminds us how important it is to have strong and capable leaders. and how connected we are together. in honor of our ancestors, our foremothers, our sisters and the struggle, i am so proud to kick off this event and to bring together our two city female elected officials, women who not only forged the path, but always bring others along with them. carmen chu as served as the elected assessor since 2013. her efforts in the in performing the office and successfully reversing decades of old backlog, earned her office the prestigious 2020 good government award, an hon father recognizing the excellence in public sector
management and stewardship. assessor chu has also recently taken on a new leadership role to co-chair the economic recovery task force, using her fiscal expertise to help san francisco through an unprecedented economic impact from covid-19 pandemic. on top of all of this, she is vice president of the california assessors' association, served on the employees retirement system board, overseeing the investments of $26 billion in public pension system and a little provides direction on the executive board of spur, a non-profit focused on developing regional solutions to cross-county challenges like housing affordability and climate resilience. in addition to all of these wonderful things, and all of these new roles, she has a new role as a mother. and is forever a public servant with her values rooted in her experience growing up as a daughter of immigrants.
thank you for your leadership, assessor chu, thank you for being here. and finally it's my honor to welcome our mayor, london breed. in 2018, mayor breed was elected to be the first african-american woman and the second woman in san francisco's history to serve as mayor. she was re-elected for her first full term in november 2019. she led san francisco's emergency response to covid-19 with grit and grace. and is currently guiding the city's phased reopening and economic recovery. recently mayor breed announced -- since becoming mayor, her priorities have included helping the city's homeless population and to care and shelter and adding more housing for residents of all income levels. helping those suffering from mental health and substance-use disorders, and ensuring that all san franciscans have access to a
thriving economy. furthering san francisco's leadership and combating climate change and honestly the list goes on and on. so thank you all again for being here. i'm excited to get this conversation started. >> thank you, breanna, for such a nice introduction. we will now ask our assessor carmen chu, the co-founder of the w challenge, to give some introduction remarks, as we are awaiting for the mayor to join us shortly. >> thank you. first off, i want to just thank everybody, all of our partner organizations, breanna, for your wonderful and warm introduction. thank you all for joining us in this virtual way. i think that this is a special day, a day that i think as breanna mentioned, women were able to win the right to vote. it did take decades, though, for
indigenous women and women of color to also be able to participate. so i think as we take the moment to celebrate this milestone in our history, it's also important to recognize that the struggles for participation, the struggle for representation still continues even as we speak. it is highlighted not only from what we're seeing from the federal attacks, in terms of women's rights and the place of women, but also when we're thinking about even how we are all seeing the response to covid-19. i think it's not lost on so many of us that covid-19, though it is a disease that impacts everyone, it has not been impacting our communities in an equal way. we've seen a disproportionate impact on our lateef hasani grat latinx communities. women bear the brown in the industries most impacted negatively by covid-19, health care sectors, education,
childcare. and not only that, but we are also seeing that women also are playing a role of double duty, even triple duty when it comes to not only balancing their jobs, employment, careers and also childcare and elder care. this is something that is intimately experienced by so many of us. for myself, as a young mother, with a 15-month-old daughter and having my elderly parents now sheltering in place with us, i feel that impact. and yet i find myself really understanding how fortunate i am, even to be in a place that i am now and to be able to still have a child. so many of the people that we're talking about have lost their jobs, are on the verge of losing their businesses and their homes. it really does highlight the importance of recognizing the impacts of covid and the opportunity to really step up. and so today we have a unique opportunity to be able to talk about women leadership, especially at this time. i think as breanna had mentioned
earlier, there's a cross section of home things happening, in addition to the challenges that we have with covid-19, we're seeing wildland fires across the state of california, that's brought about by climate change. we're not only seeing that, but continued challenges at the federal level when it comes to our immigrant communities and people of color. and so again we're really, really excited to have the mayor today to be able to speak more about women's leadership and the importance of that going forward. and so i see that our mayor has joined us. and so i want to welcome london to the program. i think today's going to be a very -- it's going to be a unique opportunity. we rarely have the chance to be able to interview each other and have a candid conversation. so it will be a lot of fun to be able to do that today. but just a moment right before you came on, mayor breed, breanna was able to share some really great information about
your bio. today people are really looking forward to get to know more about you and your leadership style as we go forward. i think as you know we started the w challenge a few years ago and you've been a strong supporter from the beginning. i think one of participated every single year that we have come together to talk about the sponsor of voting and women's participation. this year our challenge is to really make sure we're highlighting the 100-year history of at least 100 great, amazing women leaders. so we really want to tell the story of women's leadership through the years. and how we all build upon those histories, in order to be where we are today. so again i'm super excited to bring mayor breed on to the show today. i'm going to ask you the first question. but actually before we do that, why don't i ask you to introduce or say a few words if you'd like to, to commemorate the 100 year-anniversary. >> well, thank you so much, carmen.
it's, of course, always great being with you and talking about important issues in our city, pour importantly celebrating 100 years of women receiving the right to vote. we all know sadly, with the history of this country, that did not include women of color. and we know that, you know, when i think about from a perspective of where we are now in this country, and how there is finally a reckoning that is occurring around race and around inequality and what's happening to people, as a result of that spark that sadly involves the death of george floyd, i think this is the perfect time to start to have these honest conversations about this. because from my perspective, you know, our differences are what makes us a better city. it's what makes us a better country. i hope my phone is not too loud. i don't know how to turn it off.
but it makes us a better -- it makes us a better city. it makes us a better country. and i think that it starts with the next generation and it also needs to be embedded in our young people at an early age, that in a way that could effectively allow for change. because the sad reality is we know a lot of this is taught in the home. it's taught, you know, early on. and it develops into who you are as a person naturally. we have to get to the point of all of that. we have to be prepared to have the honest conversations about our differences, you know, how we all fit into this world. and how working together we can make things better. and i've got to be honest. no one does that better than women. [laughter] but we are, you know, multi-taskers and it's naturally who we are. so as we celebrate, you know, the right to vote for him, we
have to also keep in mind there was a time that women couldn't vote in this country. there was a time that black people couldn't vote in this country. there was a time that folks were discriminated against and hung just because they wanted to exercise their right. we dishonor their memory and sacrifice when we don't show up to make our voices heard. that's the celebration should remind us about those people and what they sacrificed and how we have appear obligation to not only exercise our right to vote ourselves, but to make sure that we are lifting up others to do the same. and that we are also making it clear to the next generation how significant it is for them to do so as well. >> yes. >> glad to be here. absolutely. i think the points you make really do resonate, because i
think that the fight continues, right. even now i mean we're continuing to see the inequities continue to be part of our daily lives. we need to really speak honestly about it. it is really hard. it is hard to talk about race, because it's uncomfortable. unless we start to get to a place where we can do that, i don't know how we start to dismantle what's there, right. and even within the last covid response, we've been seeing a lot of rise in anti-asian sentiments, people blaming the asian community for what's happening. i think even then we need allies, we need people to say that's not right, that's not okay, that's not the reason why we are in the place that we are. and so i think there's a lot of -- there is a lot of hurt and there's a lot of healing that we need to be responsible for. >> yep. and also, carmen, you know, think about -- i don't believe there's one person on this earth who hasn't been disrespected in some way. >> absolutely. >> and they now that hurts.
and it doesn't feel good. i'm sure you've been called racial names. i've been called names. and when you think about that, why would you want somebody else to feel that way. >> that's right. >> and i think that we have to start to get to, you know, the root causes of how those things developed. and we have to have honest conversations. and just, you know, for example, i still have people in my family who make certain comments and use certain, you know, racial slurs that i have to correct. and they're basically like, well, we always said that. and i don't do it because i'm mayor. i want to be clear. but i do it because it's offensive to the people that claim we respect, right. it's like when you use those terms and you don't understand
it's not appropriate. why would you continue to do that. so don't tell me you have a friend who is gay or you have a friend who is chinese and you have a friend who is this and they don't have a problem with it. i don't care. i have a problem with it. >> yeah. >> because i would be offended if someone used certain comments and words against me. but we have to also educate our family members, especially our older family members about terminologies that are just not appropriate to say about other people. >> yeah. and i think that it's absolutely true. i think the more that we can personalize and share with our family what our expectations are and what it means for people, i think the better -- i think we all grow up with certain experiences and we all have preconceived notions about people and we all have ways to shortcut what we think.
but ting what is important that we recognize that they exist, right, that we might have biases that exist. and make sure that they don't drive how we make decisions or they don't drive how it is that we interact with people. i think that's what's really important. it's not to say that any of us are perfect or we don't have biases. but it's to recognize that we do. >> yeah. >> to make sure we don't let that motivate us, right. i think as you mentioned, when we have an opportunity to give a different perspective when a family member or anyone is making a generalization about a particular community, it's to say why do you say that. i don't think that's true. that generalization actually is wrong. what would you think if they said this about our community, right. it's to make sure we kind of do that we continue to grow and evolve. we're in the middle of a global pandemic. no one thought we would be having to deal with something
like this. not only that. we're say it's where we have conversations and we're having a reckoning when it comes to institutional racism, police brutality. so i want to know what does it feel like to be mayor of a city like san francisco during this time. do you thinking about a woman mayor makes a difference? >> oh, my god. carmen -- >> it's a big question. i mean, no one can prepare for this kind of thing, you know. >> well, i'll just say that, you know, i'm very spiritual. and when i became mayor, even to this very day, based on my circumstances, i still can't believe that someone like me could actually be mayor of san francisco. it still -- it's almost unreal. i wake up in the morning, it's like, yep, you're still mayor. and it's still blowing me away.
and then when i think about what i have come into and my personal background and my experiences. talking about creative in times such as this. and that was kind of the message. and because i will say -- i was in my head wondering what's going on here. you know, is this the end of the world. like global pandemic. the fires, the unrest, all of the protests, all of this stuff. i was just like, wow. and then our president, right like this is like almost as if i'm watching a movie. and it's not real. but it's real. and it's our life. and what i realizeif i were not mayor, how would i want to feel.
and how would i want my leaders to waive in a way that help -- to behave in a way that helps reassure me that things will be okay. >> yeah. >> and so that's how i've made the decisions that i have made. and by being completely honest with the public every step of the way. and also letting the public know we don't know what the future holds, which you typically as a politician should not maybe say or people think you should not say. but i think that, you know, we as women, we're kind of realists. and we feel strongly about -- like, for example, your mother, you know, you know how it is where you want to do everything for your kids, but you also have to say, no. we can't. >> oh, my gosh. i told you. i don't say no. >> i'm going to get you, ca car. you have to man up. [laughter]
but you've got it like -- but part of saying to our children is to protect them. >> yeah. it's part of what is important in our natural -- this is naturally how we are. we're nurturing people as women in most cases. and we care about doing what's right for folks. and i think that has been a guiding principle for me, because it's not easy, of course. and, you know, like, for example, you think that it doesn't hurt my heart to see people sleeping on the ground or -- it's not that i don't like seeing it, it just hurts. it's a human being that's sleeping on the ground. and in my mind i can't help but -- when we go past and, you know, honestly i pray for them and i also ask god to help give me the strength to be able to do this job and to make things better for people. it's not about the complaints.
it's about the need to try and get people to help and the support that they need. so i think, you know, in terms of governing, it's just -- i am doing the best that i can. i am listening to various advisers, but also members of the public with their emails and their comments and their suggestions and trying to make good decisions. because a lot of people are counting on me. they're counting on me. it's not london, it's the mayor as a symbol of, you know, the leader of the city. and they're counting on me to make good decisions, to keep them safe. and so that's how i see my job. and it's important to make sure that we're doing what we're doing. and that's really why when -- i mean, we can't just do one thing, we have to do a lot of things. and that's why i was like, carmen is one of those people that i respect, as it relates to money management.
[laughter] and fiscal responsibility. she's like bringing in the bread. but also the accountability and everything. she's the perfect person to help with the economic recovery and what that entails. plus, on top of that you're very thoughtful in how you think about things. you're not just thinking about a business, you're thinking about the people because of your family, right. and your experiences growing up and your mom and dad. you're thinking about those experiences and how they had to struggle. >> yeah. >> and you know what people are going through. and so i guess i'll go into my next question -- my question, my first question to you is, it's like as a daughter of immigrants, and a small business owners, how did your personal experience shape you as a person and as a leader for a time such as this? >> yeah. i mean, i think just going to a point thaw made earlier, when you were talking about, you
know, -- what is it like being kind of a woman leader, too. i don't know -- i think that when i've seen with you has just been this real collaborate approach. i'm not sure that any other elected mayor would have asked another elected person to help do the work that you asked me to do on the economic recovery task force. and i think that says a lot about how you approach things, which is let's bring in people to help be problem solving together. and i really appreciate that, because i'm not sure that anybody would just do that, right. i think that says volumes. you know, in terms of being, you know, how it is that we approach leadership, especially as you grow up, i think especially for me i saw my parents really struggle, right. i was a young girl, i never saw my parents. i was a latchkey kid. my mom and dad were working every single day. they would go to work, i'd be at school already, they wouldn't come home until after i went to
sleep. i really rarely saw my parents. and i think seeing how hard they worked, it's -- it's a symbol of sort of how hard it is for a lot of small businesses to make it and to survive. and i think seeing how they struggled, seeing how they were discriminated against because they had an accent or how people didn't street them the right way when they went in to ask for help, because they couldn't say it right or had an accent, that really hurt me. when i think about public service and the things i hope to do, it's to really try to create opportunities for people and make sure that everybody knows that they're worthy. it doesn't matter where they come from or how much they have or how they can speak. they're worthy as individuals. and then i think now especially as a young mother, too, i love my daughter so much. she's really changed i think my perspective and, you know, my patience. and i realize that, you know, when i see the love that i have for her, hurts me to think that
there are other kids who don't have the same support, who potentially are going hungry, who don't have the same opportunities to succeed. and that hurts me. because i just turn that around and say, what would i feel if that was for my daughter. what would i feel if she didn't have the chance to be loved, to be fed, to feel safe, to feel like she could be whatever she wanted to be. that kind of feeling helps me today. keep on making sure that you create opportunities, that you help people have a job, that you can support families the best that you can. you know, we're not going to be perfect. and i like when she said earlier about being honest with people about where our problems are. we should tell folks, let's be honest, here's where we have problems. here's what i need help with doing. here's what the city needs to do to pull things together. and we're not perfect. but this is what i'm going to do about it, right. i think it's important to tell
people that, because, you know, in terms of leadership, it's really important to be transparent with people, because you lose the integrity, you lose the only thing that you have going for you, which is, you know, what you represent and what you say. are you going to say the things you say you're going to do. are you going to do the things that you say, right. if you lose that, you lose integrity, you lose people's trust. i think that's really embedded from the lessons that my parents have taught me. but i think also again i think just being someone who, you know, feels, who is a mother, who kind of sees the struggle that my parents went through, i don't want to see that for other people. i want to do everything i can to change that. so i think being on the economic recovery task force, i think about that every single day. i think what can we do as a city to help to save that one more business, save that job, so that people have the chance to be stable, you know. and have opportunities. what do we need to do to make sure that actually kids are not going to fall behind.
like you know the distance learning is what we're doing right now, it's a travesty to not provide education to our young kids, who will fall further behind if we don't get it right, if we just don't figure out a way. i think those are the things that really just drive me as a leader, to say what are those struggles that people feel, that i know from my own background that can really help to change things. i think you and i have the same experience. it really drives us. >> yeah. >> i think it kind of goes back to i think about the conversations you and i have had, where, you know, we are kind of commiserating over something really terrible happening, like something that was just like ridiculous that was happening in politics. you know, politics is tough because despite the best intentions sometimes, things get said a different way, it's represented in a way that's different. sometimes things are just really hard. so i'm curious to hear from you
about what is, you know, what is it about your life or your experiences that helped to motivate you, when things are hard? you know, because being mayor you get a lot of criticism for things that you can control and things that you can't control, right. and, you know, how do you deal with that? and what kind of keeps you centered? >> well, just think about it, carmen, can you imagine the fact that you and i both came up under some of the most challenging of circumstances that we'd ever be in positions like this. >> yeah. >> it starts with that, number one. number two, as hard as things are now, things were worse when i was a kid in terms of my life experience. so when i tell people like i grew up in public housing, i didn't just grow up there, i had every single experience directly in my household family
situation, where when you talk about domestic violence, when you talk about drugs, prostitution, grandma raising me, criminal justice system, mentally ill. all of these things -- welfare, food stamps, you know, clothing with holes in them and everything else and criticism and fights and drama and lack of access to things. anything that anyone probably talks about, that they care about in terms of helping people in, you know, the most challenging of circumstances, i probably experienced it directly in my household. and the reason why in some circumstances i don't into depth about some of those really tragic stories is because out of respect too my family members. -- respect for my family
members. out of respect for not putting all of their business out there, because i'm the one in the limelight. and i don't want to expose them to, you know, challenges. i'm able to talk about my sister, who died from a drug overdose, because of how it impacted me personally, you know. i talk about my brother, because my brother was okay that i talk about his unfortunate situations. you know, but, you know, like just experiences that i had, when i think about, you know, like being a kid in the midst of those challenges and not being able to escape that world, you know, i just -- you know, that is really what drives me. because i know that my experience is not unique. what is unique that i'm in a position like this, coming out of those circumstances. and this is why this work is so
important to me, because i know that there are other young, talented people out there that just need a chance. they need a chance. they need a support system. so as challenging as a time that we're having right now, and as much criticism and i may receive it pales in comparison to what i experienced growing up. that's why i feel confident about my strength and my ability to take on a role like this. because i feel like i was prepared to be in a situation like this. it's so interesting because yes, it's hard, yes, sometimes it's frustrating. and there are setbacks and disappointments and struggles associated with this work, but i
feel optimistic about our ability to really make a difference. a mayor would ask another elected official to, you know, it's not just that i asked you, it's just i also have to listen to what you're advice is, even if i disagree with it. part of that is really how i work, because it's not just about me. i feel like it's important, as a leader, that you bring other people along and you're prepared to listen, it doesn't just have to be your way or the highway. and so i think my experience of growing up and seeing how infective that kind of approach has been and how it had a negative impact on people that grew up like me is why i do
this. because i want to change things genuinely. the only way you're able to do that is by making sure you're making good decisions and you're always keeping in mind the people that we're here to serve. so i want to go back -- i know, you know, we're talking about our various experiences. but i just want to jump in, because when you first became a member of the board of supervisors, you were the only asian woman to serve at that time. >> yeah. >> and i just want to know how did it feel to be on the board? because the board of supervisors right now is a hot mess. and there's always a lot of drama, you know, i served on the board, too. but there were other women. you left me. [laughter] i was like, no, carmen, don't leave me. >> i went downstairs. >> but tell me when you first
started, because you weren't trying to run for office. you weren't trying to be in politics. you were just dealing with the money and the finances and trying to do your job. tell me what that was like for you. >> yeah, i think for me, you know, i'm -- by nature i'm probably more of an introvert than anything, you know. i think people kind of like you are? how can you be a politician. by nature that's what i was. my parents were always like, you're so shy, are you ever going to make it in this world. are you going to hide behind me all the time, right, when i was younger. we all kind of learn and we grow. you know, i had been in the mayor's budget office for gavin newsom at this time. i enjoyed the policy work behind the scenes and getting down to the nuts and bolts of things. at the end of the day, when we talk about policy, ultimately when you want to look attack priorities of a city and the values of the city, you see where the money is spent. because that matters, right. where you put your resources matters and it speaks about the
values that we have as a city. and so that was really kind of where i started. and then i think overnight mayor newsom, at the time, appointed me to be a member of the board. and it was -- it was under a cloud of challenges in the asian communities, right it was. it was then when the supervisor of district 4 was under investigation. i remembering about the only asian supervisor at that time. it's a heavy kind of burden in a way, because you feel like you have to represent all of the chinese community, all of the asian community, right. and what does that mean? because our community is so diverse, right. i can't possibly represent the perspective of every single person. but it felt very heavy. and i asked myself why am i the only asian-american in the city, where we have such a large population, right. the other thing weighing heavy on me at the time, and played out during the election, a lot
of people were basically saying that i didn't have sort of the right to be the representative, because i wasn't born in san francisco, right. and there was nothing that more kind of offended me than that, to think that if i wasn't born here, so if i was an immigrant or if i was someone who had moved here, but cared a lot about the city, that i didn't have an equal right or i shouldn't have a voice, offended me to the soul. because it kind of just said, what does that mean about my parents who emigrated here and worked so hard. are you saying they don't have a right to participate or have a voice also, right. i remember when i was running, it was under this cloud of, well, are all asian politicians corrupt, you know, because it wasn't just -- there were a few other issues that had happened. i think it was just this feeling of needing to make sure that i comported myself that was above and beyond, to make sure i left
no doubt that that's not the all asian-machineries behaved, -- all asian-americans behaved. make sure that you are representing in a way that you leave room for people to come behind you, right. i didn't want to be an example of yet another asian-american politician who was disappointing the community, right. and so i think it was just -- it was a big challenge because there's so much kind of going on at the same time. but i'm happy that we have since that time have had many more folks rise and be elected. and i think we need to continue to support that. so i think the work that we can do to continue to mentor young people and especially young women i think is really, really important. because i think sometimes people just need to see that it's possible. you know, i said that to you before, right, too. you know when someone sees that -- as someone who went through all of the hardship that you went through, who grew up facing
all of the challenges that you did, were able to -- was able to become the mayor, that's inspiring, right. just that example and just seeing that is inspiring. for someone to say i'm looking at carmen and i'm that shy kid who no one really paid maybe that much attention to. but she can become an elected person and do good things, too. that's inspiring, too. those are the examples we need to show is that not all leadership styles are the same. but we can all succeed as leaders, right. and so i think that's something that has been imprinted in me, i've kind of realizing this. >> yes. i'm sorry. >> go ahead. >> a really good point about where, you know, different styles of leaders, right. and i like that. but we both have very, you know, unique backgrounds that have, you know, involved struggle in
some capacity. i think it also developed -- it also helps us to develop a appreciation and respect for one another as well, which i think is also important in the world of politics. how we treat each other, even in the midst of our disagreementses, it's so important, because that's one of thing biggest challenges that we face. and when we have disagreements and we start to do the personal attacks and some of the other lies and other things, it just doesn't set a good example i think for young generations. we're just as bad what we see happening in the white house with we go that route. >> that's right. i want to ask you a personal question, but a fun one, which is what is something that no one knows about you? a fun fact. >> okay. a fun fact. one of my absolute favorite
shows that i watch all the time, people would not believe it, it's "fraser." [laughter] i love "fraser" because, listen, this is a tough job. you know how like at night, i try not to watch the news or nothing too serious before i go to bed. and most of the time and i just kind of to laugh and smile or do something more happy, i watch "fraser." >> so i have to admit, my guilty pleasure is watching korean dramas. those romantic dramas. love them. >> oh, my goodness. yeah. i just -- and i love out loud a lot of times when i'm watching "fraser." all my by myself normally. [laughter] that would probably surprise a lot of people. >> so kind of getting back to a
bunch of encouraging, this idea about encouraging women to participate. you know, i want to know what do you think about -- what would you say to someone on the fence about participating? and if someone is thinking about running for office or wanting to do something where they get on a commission or something like that, how -- what do you think people need to do to prepare for that experience. what would you say to those women? >> well, what i would say is when you feel something, when you want to do something, then you should go for it. part of what you want to make sure is you do your homework to prepare. that you know exactly what whatr roles and responsibilities are and the position that you're going for, whether it's a request to me to be a member of a board or a commission, that i have the ability to make appointments for. or if you decide to run for public office. you know, when i decided to run for supervisor, i wanted to be a
good supervisor for the people of the district i represent, where i grew up in. and so that entailed making sure i knew how to do policy and legislation and i understand how the process worked and the city worked. and the good news i'd been on commissions and other places. so i understood it. but i actually went back to school late in life, before i ran, to get my master's in public administration. and i ended up graduating from u.s.f. with honors, because i was committed to making sure that i was the best policymaker for the people that i represented. and i'm not suggesting that you do that. it's just that whatever role you want to play, you set your sights on that role and you make sure that you're prepared to take it on and all that it entails. and unfortunately in the world of politics, and in the world of public service, it also comes
with its fair share of criticism. and i think it's going to -- it's really important that you have thick skin. and it's important that you have -- i'll tell you i made some mistakes along the way. because, you know, i want to be honest. i'm a girl from the projects. don't come for me unless you want me to come for you. so i have made some mistakes early on where i have cursed some people out and did some things. and what i had to realize is if i want to represent people, it can't be about me any more. so i can't do what i typically would do if it's just me, when i'm entering the world of politics. so i had to grow a lot in the position. part of it is just really making sure that you make yourself into the best person you can be. you just the best job you can be and you remember you're there representing other people. don't let yourself get in the way of that. >> i agree. and i think, you know, i second that point that you make about sort of making sure that you're prepared and know what is
required of you. and i think it's also about being prepared to make hard choices. >> yes. >> because it's easy to kind of just fall with the rhetoric, where the wind is blowing. it's really hart not to go -- hard not to go in that direction. people ask us to be leaders to say based on what you know and where you want to do for community, is this the right choice or is it not. sometimes may not be convenient, right. it may just be the thing that is not the most popular thing that people want you to do. but you think it's the right call. i think it's important. i think two other things that you mentioned earlier, i think is really important. optimism. if you're not somewhat optimistic about being able to make change, politics and public office isn't for you. because you've got to be tenacious, you have to believe that you can do something. it's easy to get discouraged if you don't.
a story of tenacity. i don't know if you remember, london, you and i were on a trip to israel, right before the mayor made an appointment to the district 5 seat. do you remember this? >> yes, yes. >> and i remember -- so, you know, ultimately the mayor ended up appointing someone else, right. and london still ran, right. she's like well, i'm still going to run. i still want to do this. she ended up winning, right. i remember on that trip -- i remember seeing you. you were like what's going to happen. she was thinking about it the whole time. even though we were looking at different things, learn being, you know, the diaspora. she was tenacious and wanted to do the job. because it came across, right. those a few other things. you have to be optimistic that you can make change and be reallying to work hard. the changes that are really worthwhile, are hard to get to. >> yeah. it just want to add. i know we have to wrap it up, i
see your communications person. i just want to add that you also -- i think it is important that you are really prepared to make the hard decisions. and at the end of the day, when you make that, is the right decision, not for your political career, is it the right decision for the people you represented. never lose sight of that. >> yeah. >> there were a lot of things that i supported that no other candidates supported when i ran for mayor. and people were trying to tell me to change my position. i said but that's not fair to the public. they need to know who i am as a person and the kinds of decisions that i'm going to make. and that's what's so critical. don't change who you are to fit into it. that's where sometimes people go wrong because of what they see in the political climate. >> yeah. totally agree. because ultimately something has to ground you, right. the things that we talked about, about the things that motivate us to do good, if you keep on
changing what that is, i'm not sure you industrial a direction any more, right. >> totally. >> i really enjoyed our conversation. >> thank you. >> it's been a lot of fun chatting with you. and really just kind of -- i think it offered people a really unique look into how you think about things and, you know, i think it's a great opportunity to just highlight, you know, an amazing job you're doing. thank you for all of your leadership, especially during a hard time and for joining us. and with that i'm going to turn it over to vivian so that she can help us wrap up. >> thank you, madam mayor. thank you, madam assessor, for such a great conversation. i really hate to interrupt and come in and end it. it was such a great conversation for all of your stories and sharing your thoughts and the passion behind running for offices. those are really great lessons for us to learn. so at this point i also want to just quickly go into our t-our w challenge 2020. as you may all know, that ever since the w challenge has
launched, we have been creating a new challenge every year to uplift women. also trying to encourage more women to vote, especially for this upcoming election, it's so important for all of us. we're going to be running a ten-week social media campaign starting from today and all the way up to the election day. we have 100 women from the past century that we have selected. they are local, they are great. they've been part of all of the suffrage movement, as well as other social justice movements as well. so we encourage everyone to go on our website. i'm going to be quickly going into it, sharing it on our screen right here. if you go to that home page, all you need to do is to click on the 100 years of women leaders here. then you can read about the details of our campaign. but basically you just need to select two to three women each week and feature on your
preferred social media platforms, #wchallenge and encourage more women to do that. so we're hoping that by uplifting these stories, we are able to encourage more women to vote and take leadership. just in honor of all of these women that were before us and all that they have done to grant the right that we have today. so thank you so much for everyone who is joining us. we are inviting our partners as well, alison go, president of the league of women voters san francisco here to give us the final remarks to end today's celebration. thank you. alison, the stage is yours. >> thanks. thank you for having me today. i am so touched and really energized to hear the stories and experiences of madam assessor and mayor breed. you know, both as a young woman and an immigrant, really thank you for really your leadership in sharing these moments with us. thank you for everybody who helped plan this amazing event
today. i know normally we would be on the steps of city hall. this is pretty great to hear everyone's stories. i can feel the energy throughout san francisco and a huge thank you to our volunteers kathy bar, who really helped to put this together, on behalf of the league as well. my name is alison go. i'm the president of the league of women voters of san francisco. we're a nonpartisan, volunteer-run organization focused on non-partisan voter education and advocacy efforts here in san francisco. you know, this election is unlike any election before and unprecedented challenges. every single time we hear this is the most important election yet. actually it's true this time. and with covid-19, the state of california has naile -- mailed y single voter a battle. this is really, really great. many of our fellow san franciscans may not be used to the voting process and there's a lot of misinformation out there on how to get the ballot, how to
transmit the ballot and election security. first step, making sure you're registered to vote. if you're already registered, you'll automatically receive your ballot during the first two weeks of october. and if you're not registered or if you've moved recently or maybe changed your name, you need to re-register. remember that the voter registration deadline is octobe. you can register to vote or re-register on our website at. wehavelinkstoallofthesethings. and then again if if you're not sure of the voter status and you want to double check sometimes, you can double check the voter registration online, same site. you can check what address they have on file to make sure you get your ballot on time. if all of this seems like a lot to remember, go to lwvsf.org and
help make your plan to vote, whether it's mailing your ballot in, dropping it off downtown at the auditorium or even dropping it off at your local polling location, just make sure that your vote is counted this november. the league also puts out a lot of non-partisan voting material. for example, our proand cons guide offers an eas easy to read ballot measure. the guide is budge -- put togetn many languages to reflect the community in san francisco. next month we're hosting candidate forums for several of the board of supervisors races. specifically district 1, 7, and 11. these are free, they're going to be open for the public. we will broadcast these over zoom and we'll post them afterwards on our youtube page and they'll be broadcast over at sfgovtv.org. thanks to our partnership with
them. and guess what, these with always be found on our website on the vote page. the page will be updated throughout the fall, as more of our materials come out. there will be a really great one-stop portal for all of this information. so thank you for having me. these next nine weeks, let's get our friends, family, neighbors, colleagues to commit to vote. and make sure that they have a plan to vote, whether it's in-person or with the mail-in ballot. please go to wchallenge.org, especially the women here today. thank you for having me and please stay up to date on everything the league is doing. you can follow us on facebook or on twitter. or whic by visiting us on the website. >> i just saw in chat we have a series of events coming up also. 5:00 today i believe the league is having a partnership with the
mechanics library and also talking about the suffrage movement and tomorrow in partnership with the public library, the neighborhood history project is also having a presentation about the first suffrage march that is happening and was led by a san franciscan from glen park. so stay tuned. you can also visit wchallenge.org under events to check out those activities that are ongoing. so thank you again for everyone. this concludes our virtual celebration of women's equality day 2020 today. thank you very much.
>> executive orders and the mayor's proclamation declaring the existence of a local emergency. during the coronavirus disease emergency the fire commission regular meeting room at city hall is closed and meetings of the fire commission. you may watch this meeting live at www.sfgovtv.org. participate during public comment by phone and please