News

Saywell, Gupta top spenders in Menlo Park school district election

Both were also the top donors to their own campaigns

The two top spending candidates in the Menlo Park City School District race, Scott Saywell and Alka Gupta, have each spent close to $7,000 but both either loaned or contributed the bulk of their funding to themselves, according to campaign finance reports for the period through Oct. 22.

Mr. Saywell reported he had spent a total of $7,100 by Oct. 22, with $8,150 of his total of $10,225 in campaign fundraising coming as a loan from himself.


Scott Saywell

Alka Gupta

Caroline Lucas

David Ackerman
Ms. Gupta reported spending $6,933 by Oct. 22, with $7,000 of her total campaign donations of $10,975 coming as a contribution from herself.

Candidate Caroline Lucas reported spending $2,851 by Oct. 22, with total campaign fundraising of $3,078. She reported receiving $454 in loans from her husband, Joe Giarrusso.

Contributions to Mr. Saywell's campaign between Sept. 25 and Oct. 22 came in the form of a $500 in-kind newspaper advertisement from Realtor Keri Nicholas of Alain Pinel (whose residence was not listed on the campaign form); $200 from Olivia Martinez, retired, of Dallas, Texas; and $100 from three people: Ellen Kitamura, a community volunteer from Menlo Park; Tricia Barr, in business development at Adobe Systems, of Menlo Park; and Josh Becker, CEO of Lex Machina, from Menlo Park.

Ms. Gupta's reported contributions between Sept. 25 and Oct. 22 include: $7,000 from herself; $1,000 from Bhavin Merchant, a strategy consultant from Fremont; $250 from Darr Gerscovich, a senior VP of marketing for DroneDeploy, from Menlo Park; $150 from Kelly Fergusson, an executive at OpTerra Energy Services, from Menlo Park; and $100 from four people: Ramkumar Agrawal, retired, from Sylvania, Ohio (total contributions to date of $200); Jesal Merchant, a consultant, from Fremont; Patrick Nadol, a scientist at the Center for Disease Control, from Dulles, Virginia (total contributions to date of $150); and Josh Becker, CEO at Lex Machina, from Menlo Park.

Between Sept. 25 and Oct. 22, Ms. Lucas reported receiving $1,600 in contributions from Peter Carpenter, retired, from Atherton (total contributions to date of $2,600); $250 from Mary Elizabeth Suhr, a senior vice president of Morgan Stanley, from Menlo Park; and $100 from JoAnne Goldberg, senior managing partner at Mission Cntrl, from Menlo Park.

Candidate David Ackerman said earlier that he is not accepting contributions and will spend less than $2,000 so he does not need to file campaign finance statements.

Scott Hinshaw, who filed to run and will appear on the ballot, withdrew from the race on Sept. 23 and said he cannot serve if elected.

Candidate spending was for law signs, mailings and campaign materials, and voter files.

Comments

16 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voters
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 1, 2016 at 11:10 am

My family and friends stand and support David Ackerman for School Board member. The only candidate who is not accepting money from BIG Business or from other companies or people who may want to influence the election process for maybe their own or business gains by the way I'm looking at it!


What do these companies and/or people from business get for giving their money to Alka Gupta??????

Gupta - $1,000 from Bhavin Merchant, a strategy consultant from Fremont
$250 from Darr Gerscovich, a senior VP of marketing for DroneDeploy
$150 from Kelly Fergusson, an executive at OpTerra Energy Services
$100 from four people: Ramkumar Agrawal, retired, from Sylvania, Ohio

[Part removed. Raises suspicions unfounded by evidence.]

Caroline Lucas in my view &/or opinion is so out of her depth and unqualified to hold the position of school board member. All my friends, parents I know and people I talked too in MPCSD will not support her. She just one of these people I will not trust my children education too!!!! It's too important!!!!

[Part removed.]

We all see from the US elections that BIG Business plays a role and each of these companies or people who donate money except something in return. You don't give money for nothing do you!!!

WELL NOT WITH MY CHILDREN EDUCATION!!!

This is why I will help and support a local candidate who is not accepting donations!!! Who has been a teacher, a principal in MPCSD, is a father and lives in Menlo Park. And is a great role for all our children and a amazing community member.



7 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 1, 2016 at 2:04 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

Don't be fooled. Caroline Lucas is eminently qualified for the board. Read her position papers. Parents are just freaking out because they know if she is elected she will work for financial accountability from the board and the district and the parents don't want that. they just want the taxpayers in the district to keep paying more and more. Because "it's for the kids."


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Redwood City gets new brewery
By Elena Kadvany | 11 comments | 5,013 views

Learning Disabilities and the Struggle to Be Known
By Aldis Petriceks | 1 comment | 1,111 views

Couples: A Relationship Test . . .
By Chandrama Anderson | 1 comment | 681 views

Food Party! SOS
By Laura Stec | 1 comment | 472 views

Enjoy every configuration of your family
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 366 views