Mayor Jean Quan Leaves Rich Legacy for Oakland


Jean Quan’s legacy as mayor of Oakland is marked by major improvements in public safety, economic advancement and environmental initiatives in the city.

Mayor Quan was the first mayor to work directly with the federal monitor who has been overseeing city’s police department.

Before her tenure, the city’s compliance with court-mandated police reforms languished. But under her leadership, the city and the police department have completed all but a handful of the 51 tasks ordered by Judge Thelton Henderson.

Mayor Quan went beyond these tasks to hire the most diverse police force in the city’s history – with over 55 percent people of color participating in the last six police academies, including 49 percent bilingual and a record number of women recruits.

Over the last four years, she has overseen efforts to require and implement the use of police body cameras – before Ferguson, MO made these cameras into a national priority.

For the first time in decades the city have gone over a year – almost 19 months – without an officer involved shooting.

She enlisted federal help to tackle gangs and implemented police department reorganization – holding officers responsible for specific geographic areas – and launched Ceasefire, credited with helping to bring down crime and violence.

“The police reforms are my greatest legacy,” said Mayor Quan.

More broadly, Mayor Quan raised a record amount funding to support the hiring of 2,000 youth in the Mayor’s Summer Jobs program and was involved in the partnership with the White House and League of Cities to launch My Brother’s Keeper and other programs to address the needs of young men of color.

After the project had been stalled for nearly a decade, she helped to kick-start the Oakland Army Base and Port of Oakland development, bringing in a quarter of a billion dollars in state funds.

She and the governor found a developer in China, who made the individual Chinese investment in the U.S. to build 3,100 units at Brooklyn Basin, which will start construction next year.

She has pushed for the city to build Coliseum City project, now in negotiations for sports complexes, hotels and housing.

Under her leadership, Oakland built or saved a record number of 1,700 affordable homes and set a goal of 25 percent of future housing as affordable.

Since 2010, Oakland has added 18,000 jobs. Sales tax revenues rose 9 percent last year.

Oakland is a model city that leads nationally in green, sustainable practices. The city’s Zero Waste contract with trash management companies will reduce landfill waste dramatically.

The garbage diversion from the landfill will be more than 80 percent. The new bike lanes and increased focus on new housing along major arteries are making Oakland a greener community.

The results that Mayor Quan has achieved in her four years as mayor provide a solid foundation on which the city and its residents can prosper and grow.

Conway Jones


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