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Tuesday June 29, 2021 — Special Election
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California State AssemblyCandidate for District 18Short Term

Photo of Janani Ramachandran

Janani Ramachandran

Social Justice Attorney
14,036 votes (23.7%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Living Wages: I will fight to raise the minimum wage in California’s to $22/hr by 2022– with a dedicated plan to support small businesses. Living wages will lift millions of California families out of poverty while strengthening our economy.
  • Housing: I will strengthen tenant protections by repealing Costa Hawkins and the Ellis Act, provide better services for our unhoused neighbors, and increase access to affordable and working-class housing.
  • Climate Justice: I will work to enact a Green New Deal with a racial justice lens immediately, because California’s extreme climate events and deadly toxic pollutants harm us all, especially low-income communities of color.



Profession:Social Justice Attorney
Commissioner, California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs — Appointed position (2020–current)
Board Director, Men Creating Peace — Elected position (2019–current)
Board Director, Family Violence Appellate Project — Appointed position (2019–current)
Board Director, Women Lawyers of Alameda County — Appointed position (2020–current)
Social Justice Attorney, Family Violence Appellate Project (2020–2021)
Commissioner, City of Oakland Public Ethics Commission — Appointed position (2020–2021)


University of California, Berkeley J.D., Law (2020)
Stanford University B.A. with Honors (2014)

Community Activities

Volunteer, APTP Mental Health First (2020–current)
Member, Oakland Tenants Union (2021–current)
Fellow, New Leaders Council, Oakland Chapter (2021–2021)
Fellow, LGBTQ Victory Empowerment Fellowship (2020–2020)
Fellow, Equality California Northern California Leadership Fellow (2019–2019)


Janani is a social justice attorney, activist, and artist. She has devoted her life to empowering communities who have been failed by our existing systems. 

Janani is the daughter and granddaughter of immigrants from a small South Indian village who worked tirelessly every day to give her the opportunity to pursue her dreams. She is forever indebted to strength of her grandparents’ labor unions that enabled them to get a slice of the American dream and achieve economic stability.

At just 16, Janani founded a nonprofit that built libraries in her local community. After graduating from Stanford University, Janani worked as a home-visiting case manager at a community health clinic, serving immigrant mothers experiencing domestic violence and homelessness. She later founded and led the clinic’s inaugural domestic violence advocacy program.

Witnessing the horrific realities her clients faced, Janani was driven to better understand how the law could protect the rights of vulnerable communities. While attending Berkeley Law, Janani represented tenants facing eviction from some of Oakland’s most notoriously corrupt landlords. She has served on the Oakland Public Ethics Commission, and currently serves on the California Commission on API American Affairs.

While seeking out leadership positions, Janani never stopped working directly with her community. She currently works with Oaklanders experiencing mental health crises as a volunteer with APTP’s MHFirst. During the pandemic, Janani has given several “know your rights” legal trainings with local tenant unions and community-based organizations, and has helped small businesses apply for COVID-19 financial assistance. She also works with perpetrators of abuse through her role on the Board of Men Creating Peace, a restorative-justice based domestic violence intervention program. She recently worked as an attorney at Family Violence Appellate Project, pursuing legal appeals and advocacy efforts to improve access to justice for all survivors of abuse.

Don’t elect another corporate Democrat. Vote for Janani – a progressive champion who will be fearless in the fight for justice.

Who supports this candidate?

Individuals (36)

Who gave money to this candidate?


Total money raised: $160,075

Top contributors that gave money to support the candidate, by organization:

Employees of Perkins Coie LLP
Employees of Accenture
Employees of Anupama Ananda
Employees of Civic Eagle
Employees of Family Violence Appellate Project
Employees of Hospital for Special Surgery,NY
Employees of UNICEF

More information about contributions

By State:

California 63.73%
New York 20.05%
New Mexico 3.22%
Texas 2.46%
Other 10.54%

By Size:

Large contributions (95.17%)
Small contributions (4.83%)

By Type:

From organizations (2.06%)
From individuals (97.94%)
Source: MapLight analysis of data from the California Secretary of State.

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