November ballot to include a dozen water candidates

Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency

The Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency will have open six seats in November and a dozen candidates running. 

The election comes following Tom Campbell’s resignation in late May as a board member of 23 years. The board is set to reduce in size from the current 12 members, which was initially 15, down to nine over the next two elections.

The 2020 and 2022 elections will result in three elected officials representing each of three new electoral districts. 

Here are the candidates: 

Division 1 candidates

  • Beth Braunstein, a Canyon Country resident who identifies as an educator and farmer. 
  • Gary R. Martin, an incumbent who is a civil engineer and former water system engineering manager. 
  • Christine H. Okamoto, a Valencia resident who is a small business owner
  • Karla Waymire, a small business owner and attorney.  

Division 2 candidates

  • Valerie Bradford, a small business owner who identifies as the first African American female to run for the agency. 
  • Ed Colley, an incumbent who has served since 2003 and is a retired U.S. Air Force captain. 
  • Anna Kumar, an insurance agent who serves the Educational Board for Congregation Beth Shalom. 
  • Piotr Orzechowski, a Princess Cruises environmental water-programs engineer.  

Division 3 candidates

  • Kathye Armitage, a public health professional who serves on the Stakeholder Advisory Committee to the SCV Groundwater Sustainability Agency. 
  • BJ Atkins, an incumbent who founded consulting firm Environmental HELP, Inc. in 1989. 
  • Stacy Fortner, a 22-year Valencia resident with experience in sales, marketing and communications, according to her website.
  • Maria Gutzeit, a business owner who is a current vice president of the water board. 

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