ENCINITAS — Recently re-elected Mayor Catherine Blakespear announced on Tuesday her campaign to replace a termed-out State Sen. Pat Bates (R-Laguna Niguel) in California’s 36th Senate District covering North San Diego County and South Orange County, according to a news release.
“I am excited to kick off my campaign for State Senate and I am humbled by the early support I have received from friends across California,” Blakespear said in a release. “I am running to represent my neighbors in the State Senate because now is a time when our community needs leaders who will bridge divides, build coalitions, and deliver results for the families of the 36th Senate District.”
Blakespear, 45, has served on the Encinitas City Council since 2014, including four years as mayor. She also currently serves as chairwoman of the San Diego Association of Governments and is a board member of San Diego’s Airport Authority, Encina Wastewater Authority, San Elijo Joint Powers Authority and San Dieguito Water District.
Blakespear has touted the city’s environmental achievements under her leadership, including the city’s landmark climate action proposal to provide 100 renewable energy by 2030, affordable housing, road and rail corridor projects, including Leucadia Streetscape and El Portal Undercrossing projects.
Critics of Blakespear have chided her for embracing larger societal issues, such as global warming and social justice, and failing to adequately address city issues, such as homelessness, traffic and crime.
A fourth-generation resident of Encinitas and graduate of Torrey Pines High School (1994), Blakespear also earned a master’s degree in journalism at Northwestern University in Illinois. A former journalist, she has worked at The Los Angeles Times and Associated Press before earning her law degree and co-founding Blakespear & Smith Law Office with her mother, Tricia Ann Smith, in Del Mar.
Blakespear opens her campaign with key endorsements from leaders across California, including the support of California State Treasurer Fiona Ma, Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52), Asm. Tasha Boerner Horvath (D-Encinitas), Asm. Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), Asm. Chris Ward (D-78), Asm. Brian Maienschein (D-77) and many other Assembly Democrats.
“As a State Senator, I will work tirelessly to make healthcare and housing more affordable, promote green policies to cool the climate, and create a just economic recovery from the consequences of the pandemic,” Catherine said. “During my time in public service, I have a history of bringing people together to find common ground and get big things done. That’s what we need in our state leaders and that’s why I am running for State Senate.”