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Tuesday November 2, 2021 — Local Elections
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City of Santa BarbaraCandidate for Mayor

Photo of Cathy Murillo

Cathy Murillo

Incumbent Mayor; Journalist
4,769 votes (24.5%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Pandemic Recovery: We must continue to deliver full City services even as our revenue stream is challenged by the pandemic, and help businesses and families recover.
  • Environmental Protections: Launching the CCE Program which will get Santa Barbara to 100% carbon-free energy. Preparing for sea level rise. Protecting endangered species and improving creek and ocean water quality.
  • Supporting the Creation of a Civilian Oversight System for our Police Department. Influence the Sheriff’s Department and other parts of the Criminal Justice System. Working with social and racial justice community groups.



Cathy Murillo is serving her first term as Mayor of Santa Barbara, having served on the City Council since 2012. Under her leadership, Santa Barbara opened a new Children’s Library, secured funding and site for a new police station, updated the city’s Bicycle Master Plan, revitalized the Westside’s neighborhood association, passed a Just Cause Eviction ordinance, established a Project Labor Agreement policy for city public works projects, focused resources on Downtown economic vitality, and formed the City’s COVID-19 Business Advisory Task Force to help businesses recover from the pandemic economy. Working with community members, Murillo created the Pro-Youth Movement in response to a gang injunction proposed by the City of Santa Barbara and to find solutions to street violence. As Mayor, Murillo convenes a biweekly teleconference with youth service providers focusing on gang prevention.

Regional assignments include Chair of the Cities-County Affordable Housing Task Group, Chair of the Homelessness Collaborative, Chair of the South Coast Youth Safety Partnership (gang prevention), past Chair of the Air Pollution Control District Board of Directors, Director of the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments, Vice-Chair of the Coast Rail Coordinating Council (SBCAG liaison), and Director of Partners in Education – a collaboration of the Santa Barbara County Education Office and the business and non-profit community.

Murillo, the first Latina ever elected to the Santa Barbara City Council, was a print and radio journalist before going into public service. She worked at UC Santa Barbara as the News and Public Affairs Director for KCSB Radio, teaching broadcast journalism to college students. Before that, she was a news editor for the Santa Barbara Independent, and news writer for the Los Angeles Times, Ventura County Edition. She has also worked in the legal profession, and taught theater arts in public schools as an artist-in-the-classroom for the Children’s Creative Project. Murillo has a B.A. in Dramatic Art from UCSB, with an emphasis in Acting.

Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • Santa Barbara Democratic Party
  • Sierra Club - Los Padres Chapter
  • Planned Parenthood Central Coast Action Fund

Organizations (1)

  • Central Coast Labor Council

Candidate Contact Info

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