Woodlake native, former Woodlake High School teacher announces run for governor of California
CALIFORNIA – The news is out that one of Woodlake’s prized products is running to make it big this June when her name appears on the ballot for governor. Amanda Renteria announced via her Twitter account last week she will be stepping down as the California Department of Justice’s chief of operations to begin her gubernatorial race.
“Government works best when inspiring public servants do the people’s business with humility, enthusiasm, and skill. From Washington to Sacramento, we run into problems when politicians are allowed to buy their way into office and use their power for personal benefit,” she issued on her campaign web site.
She will be entering the race against Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsome who started campaigning for the governorship three years ago, and former Los Angeles mayor Anthony Villaraigosa who started his campaigning in earnest 18 months ago. Whether Renteria’s late start will hurt her is unknown, but it is worth mentioning Newsom’s latest reporting date reveals he has $16.7 million in the bank while Villaraigosa last reported he has $5.9 million.
At her latest job as DOJ’s chief of operations, Renteria says she led a team of 1,000 dedicated public servants and managed an $850 million budget. But before that she served as a key national political adviser on Hillary Clinton’s campaign for president. Although that was just some of Renteria’s time in Washington, she has spent a career working for high level senators.
After graduating from Woodlake High School in 1992, Renteria went on to attend and graduate from Stanford before earning her master’s degree from Harvard Business School. She became a consultant for the City of San Jose until she began working for Sen. Diane Feinstein in Washington D.C. in 2005 as an advisor on economic issues. Not long after that she became the first Latina chief of staff in the history of the U.S. Senate.
Perhaps her first taste of political defeat came at the hands of current congressman David Valadao in the 21st California Congressional District in 2014 where she lost by 15 points. And now she has a tough campaign ahead against two well funded candidates, but according to political insiders she has an opportunity to carry favor with Central Valley voters which would cut into parts of Villariagosa’s base. Short of that, California politicos are scratching their head as to why Renteria would jump into the race a mere four months prior to the primary.