James Toma talks to voters.

WEST COVINA — Deputy Attorney General James Toma on Saturday formally kicked off his campaign for the West Covina City Council in the Nov. 5 election.

He is one of nine candidates for three council seats. Also running are incumbents Andrew McIntyre and Rob Sotelo; Mike Spence, West Covina Unified School District board member; Armando D’Avila, probation supervisor and educator; Karin Armbrust, businesswoman; Lloyd Johnson, veteran; Corey Warshaw, retired business analyst; and Kimberly Caceres, governmental affairs director.

Toma’s campaign released the following statement:

“James Toma and his wife Minerva chose West Covina as the place to raise their two young children for the promise of safe neighborhoods and good schools. James proudly calls West Covina his home and is an active member of our community, including serving as past president of the Friends of the West Covina Library. James wants to make sure that we restore and protect, for the long term, the kinds of things that have made our city a great place to live, work, and raise a family.

“A commitment to serve was instilled in James from an early age. He believes helping improve the lives of others is the most important work a person can do. James juggled three jobs while attending Yale, becoming the first in his family to graduate from college.  After completing a master’s degree in public policy, he went on to work as a legislative aide in the State Capitol, where he championed legislation that toughened penalties for elder abuse.

“James went on to law school, where his efforts earned him a job with a prestigious private law firm after graduation. His passion for public service continued to call him though, so he went to work as a deputy attorney general in California’s Department of Justice. James now works tirelessly every day protecting consumers and guarding people from fraud and scam artists.

“James is committed to our community. In addition to his leadership in the Friends of the West Covina Library, James is an active member of the East San Gabriel Valley Japanese Community Center, has volunteered at toy drives, raised money for Alzheimer’s research and legal services for the poor, and has been an engaged participant in City Council meetings – calling for accountability and transparency in our city government.”

Toma’s endorsers include Councilmember Fred Sykes; former mayors/councilmembers Ben Wong, Mike Miller and Dr. Forest Tennant; West Covina Unified School Board President Eileen Miranda and former board member Forrest Wilkins; former Covina-Valley Unified School Board member Teri Meister; West Covina Historical Society President Miriam Tennant; Friends of the West Covina Library President Rose Gonzalez and Vice President John Konrad; and former West Covina Beautiful President Beverly Bulthuis.

Regional leaders who support Toma include State Controller John Chiang; U.S. Rep. Judy Chu; State Sen. Dr. Ed Hernandez; Assemblymember Roger Hernandez; Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District Director Bryan Urias; Covina City Councilmember Jorge Marquez; and Hacienda La Puente Unified School District board member Jay Chen.

For more information, visit http://toma4westcovina.com.

Other names on the Nov. 5 ballot include:

• Businessman/entrepreneur Martin Nakaishi for Diamond Bar City Council, one of six candidates for three seats. Also running are incumbents Ling Ling Chang, Ron Everett and Steve Tye; businessman Joseph Kim; and Nancy Lyons, board member of the Walnut Valley Unified School District.

• School administrative assistant Cynthia Segawa for Lomita City Council, one of six candidates for three seats. Also running are incumbents James Gazeley and Ben Traina; businessman Mark Waronek; business executive Dave Albert; and attorney/business owner James Thompson.

• Downey Unified School District Governing Board member Martha Sodetani of Trustee Area 1, seeking re-election. Also running is industrial maintenance electrician Victor Manuel Malagon.

And in the Bay Area:

• South San Francisco City Councilmember Karyl Matsumoto, seeking re-election. Also running are Collin Post and Carlos Martin.

• Rene Matsumoto, one of four candidates for two seats on the San Ramon City Council (Contra Costa County).

• Naomi Nishimoto, one of seven candidates for three seats on the Belmont-Redwood Shores School District Board (San Mateo County).

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