Voter's Edge California Voter Guide
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November 3, 2020 — California General Election
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California State SenateCandidate for District 19

Photo of Gary J. Michaels

Gary J. Michaels

Telecommunications Consultant
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Adopt policies for higher wages including long-term employees who have not had a wage increase
  • I will expand skill development, apprenticeship with vocational training and baccalaureate programs.
  • I will incentivize these tech companies to set space up in other cities including Santa Maria and Oxnard and I will attract energy efficient and environmental technology start-ups to Santa Barbara.



Gary Michaels is the managing partner of Summa Solutions LLC. ( ) an agency dedicated to helping K-12 schools across the country contract with fiber Internet carriers. He is also the managing partner of Summa E-rate Solutions, ( ) a sister agency which helps schools and school districts write technology plans and identify and complete USAC forms for Internet access discounts.

Summa Solutions is also a leading technology services company specializing in providing a broad suite of telecom, connectivity and cloud value-based solutions to ensure its portfolio of financial, retail and hospitality companies’ success.

Gary Michaels understands hard work and what’s involved with running a business because he has been in the private sector most of his life. One only succeeds by providing quality service.  His background allows him to identify and empathize with those who deal with unexpected circumstances because he works in a similar environment.

The convergence of media and data during the past several years is how Gary Michaels began his career in the broadcasting and cable industry and move to the data communications industry. 

In the early 1980s he moved to Los Angeles and began a regional career in broadcasting and cable with media properties including Gene Autry-owned KMPC AM 710 Hollywood, KPIX-TV (CBS) San Francisco and KPMR-TV (Univision) Santa Barbara County. He has worked in both creative marketing and creative production.

He started performing at age 16 performing on stage in Chicago community theaters and dinner theaters in musicals such as The Sound of Music and Cabaret, before heading off to college at New England College Arundel, Sussex, England to perform as a stage actor in dramatic plays ranging from John Brown in John Brown’s Body, to The King in William Saroyan’s The Cave Dwellers, to John the Witch Boy turned human in Howard Richardson’s Dark of the Moon.

Although a theater arts student in England, he changed majors and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from New England College in Henniker, NH. While at NEC he worked on the Ronald Reagan presidential campaign, represented the school at the Harvard Model UN and was president of the college senate.

He also has received an Academic Certificate in Accounting from UCLA, he is currently serving on the Santa Maria Bonita School District Measure “T” Citizens Bond Oversight Committee and is on the Board of his home-owners association.

He has lived in Santa Maria since 2005 and is active in central coast charitable activities and community events. He enjoys sailboat racing, scuba diving, golf and fitness.


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Source: MapLight analysis of data from the California Secretary of State.

Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

He is a FISCAL CONSERVATIVE who promises to not be the most conservative with making sure the government is limited and expenditures are as low as possible, but he will always try to figure out how to get the best value for the taxpayer. He promises to always tie accountability measures to funding initiatives and he will not downshift costs on his constituents.

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