San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo named Councilman Chappie Jones as vice mayor, replacing colleague Magdalana Carrasco in the largely symbolic role she held since 2017.
Liccardo praised Jones—who represents District 1 in West San Jose and has supported the mayor on a number of key votes over the past four years—as someone who brings a “thoughtful and independent perspective” to the 11-member council.
“He’s also a natural collaborator who seeks to understand all sides of an issue and is well-respected by stakeholders across the political spectrum,” the mayor said in an email to reporters Thursday afternoon.
Jones, who ran unopposed for a second term in 2018, will be formally appointed to the deputy mayoral role at next week’s council meeting. As vice mayor, he will be tasked with chairing meetings and performing other duties when Liccardo is absent.
“I greatly admire and fully share the progressive vision the Mayor has for San Jose,” Jones said in a joint announcement with the mayor. “I have worked diligently to establish an inclusive and innovative future for our city and will continue to advocate on behalf of its residents. I am humbled and proud to be given this new opportunity to continue to serve the city of San Jose and its extraordinary residents.”
Jones was born in Sacramento and moved to San Jose in the 1990s, where he said he developed a strong sense of civil service and fiscal responsibility. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from University of California, Davis, and an MBA from UC Berkeley before going on to work in a series of sales management jobs, most recently at Apple. He’s been married for 20 years to Kelli Jones and lives in the Murdock neighborhood, where the couple raised their two children.
In announcing his nomination of Jones, Mayor Liccardo also thanked Carrasco for her “exemplary service and partnership” in the role for the past two years.
“Magdalena has done a great job as vice mayor and I’m particularly thankful for her willingness to pitch in over the past week as I recover from my accident,” Liccardo said. “She has been a great partner and I look forward to continue working with her to broaden prosperity and educational opportunity in our city.”
The District 5 councilwoman, the city’s second-ever vice mayor from the East Side, knew her time in the position would end when it did; throughout her tenure, she would assert her independence by occasionally voting against Liccardo’s proposals. Through her spokeswoman, Carrasco thanked Liccardo for giving her the chance to serve as vice mayor and congratulated Jones on his nomination.
“During my tenure, I am proud of the accomplishments that directly improved the lives of the residents of East San Jose and the entire city,” she said. “We have focused policies on women and families, including the passage of the Women's Bill of Rights, increased funding for services that assist survivors of domestic violence, attacked blight in the community, strengthened policies to address human trafficking, created paths for good-paying jobs with city investment, developed a clean energy program, addressed infrastructure needs and are on track to build thousands of homes for residents of all income levels while providing enhanced protections for current renters.”
Meanwhile, Carrasco continued, she advocated for greater representation of women and people of color at all levels of local government.
“I look forward to continuing my work in East San Jose,” she concluded, “pushing forward progressive policies that address the needs of [the city].”
Today, I nominated @chappiejones to serve as the next Vice Mayor of our city. Throughout his tenure, Chappie has brought a thoughtful and independent perspective to this Council, & a natural collaborator who seeks to understand all sides of an issue. (1/2) pic.twitter.com/lw2flWgwbb
— Sam Liccardo (@sliccardo) January 10, 2019