A Message From Rachel:
Four years ago, I nervously asked you to take a chance on me and elect me as your representative on the Sonoma City Council.
Today, I ask you to do it once more.
Together, we have tackled issues ranging from diversifying our local economy to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, from modernizing our city finances to updating our water infrastructure. We've taken steps toward a more balanced future, and we've come together by the hundreds and thousands to show our support for women, equality, science, immigrants and the environment. And while we sometimes disagree about the best solution to the problems facing our city, our truest colors shined when we pushed our differences aside to make sure every single person was safe during the fires last October.
Serving you as your councilwoman and mayor has truly been an honor, and with your support and your vote, I will work hard for you – and this beautiful corner of the world we are lucky to call home – for four more years.
Rachel Hundley wasn't lucky enough to be born in Sonoma, but she got here as soon as she could. A native of Charleston, South Carolina, Rachel earned three undergraduate degrees from the University of Georgia (journalism, political science and speech & communication), as well as a law degree from the University of North Carolina. After spending four years practicing corporate litigation in New York City, Rachel felt the west coast calling, so she moved to Sonoma and started a fried chicken food truck business. The next year, Rachel was elected to the Sonoma City Council.
Rachel became Sonoma's first "millennial mayor" in December 2016. The next month, she was joined by Sonoma's newest city manager, Cathy Capriola, and Rachel spent the first three quarters of 2017 reviewing the city's internal systems and working with Cathy to improve and modernize the city's finance department. Realizing it was time to begin updating the city's General Plan, Rachel set her sights on improving Sonoma's planning process and led the charge in reconfiguring the selection process for Sonoma's planning commission to be more democratic and more representative of the city's diverse opinions.
At 1 a.m. on October 9, 2017, Rachel's life was forever changed when she read reports of a fire and ran outside to see flames on the hills two miles away. Rachel spent the next three weeks working tirelessly to assist the Emergency Operations Center, fire responder leadership, shelters and local support efforts, working to spread information in the absence of a sufficient communications system, and representing Sonoma at town halls and meetings with elected representatives from other jurisdictions, as well as local businesses and community groups after the fires were contained. We mention this here only because Rachel never talks about what she did those weeks, but the truth is, Rachel couldn't stop until the city was safe.
Rachel been featured as a speaker at the National League of Cities Congressional Conference, Greenlining Institute 25th Economic Summit, Marin Women's PAC Annual Luncheon, and others on issues ranging from housing innovation to public participation in the democratic process.
Rachel is a vocal advocate for innovative workforce housing, proactive land use planning, balance above growth, recycled water, municipal broadband internet, historic preservation and appreciation, local entrepreneurship, and economic diversity.
Rachel is proudly endorsed by:
Senator Bill Dodd
California State Senate
Congressman Mike Thompson
U.S. House of Representatives
Assemblyman Marc Levine
California State Assembly