Liccardo Leans on Guardino for Mayoral Transition Team

Last week San Jose Mayor-elect Sam Liccardo announced that an eight-person transition team will help him “identify key initiatives to focus on” during his first term. Being a part of the team is mostly ceremonial, but compared to the 67-person squadron of advisers who helped Chuck Reed prep for office, it appears somebody could have concerns about too many cooks in the kitchen. According to sources close to the process, that person is the team’s co-chair, Carl Guardino, CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, who has urged his good buddy to limit participation. Liccardo rejected any notion that he’s being unduly influenced, but he also admitted to Fly that their friendship—along with Guardino's collection of almost half a million dollars to help him get elected—has made his buddy first among equals and earned him a co-chair position. House Rep. Zoe Lofgren joins Guardino as co-chair, and her addition could be seen as a snub to Tom McEnery. The former mayor and longtime Liccardo consigliere lost a 1994 congressional race to Lofgren, who curiously didn’t even endorse Liccardo in the mayor’s race. Could it be Liccardo is keeping McEnery at arm’s length? Other notable names on the 8-team include former Mayor Susan Hammer, current Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen, Sunpower CEO Tom Werner (a former SVLG chairman) and Asst. police chief Eddie Garcia. Fresh off a scolding for pocketing prohibited 49ers tickets, Garcia’s inclusion merits scrutiny as he’ll be considered a top candidate for police chief when Larry Esquivel retires. For now, though, wags are more focused on Guardino’s pull. He’s suggested several of his own staffers for jobs in the Liccardo administration, and his wife, Leslee Guardino, a lobbyist for Canyon Snow Associates, also appears to have some influence.

Below is the full transition team list:

•             Hon. Zoe Lofgren, co-chair

•             Carl Guardino, co-chair

•             Rose Amador, Executive Director, ConXión to Community

•             Fred Ferrer, CEO, Health Trust

•             Eddie Garcia, Assistant Chief, San José Police Department

•             Susan Hammer, Former San José Mayor

•             Camile Llanes-Fontanilla, Executive Director, Somos Mayfair

•             Madison Nguyen, San José Vice Mayor

•             Tom Werner, CEO, SunPower

Carl and Leslee Guardino, left, and Mayor-elect Sam Liccardo and his wife, Jessica Garcia-Kohl, associate on and off the clock. (Photo via Twitter)

Carl and Leslee Guardino, left, and Mayor-elect Sam Liccardo and his wife, Jessica Garcia-Kohl, associate on and off the clock. (Photo via Twitter)

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  1. To bad over 95% of the San Jose police Dept don’t want to see Eddie Garcia as their new chief. Only the small amount that spend 2 +hours of his work day in the gym with him.

  2. Oh, I get it now! Run for office THEN “identify key initiatives to focus on.” Silly me; I thought a candidate should have that plan in place prior to declaring his or her candidacy. I’m so glad to have this foresightedness as my new mayoral team in San Jose! Congratulations, Sam!

    • “Silly me; I thought a candidate should have that plan in place prior to declaring his or her candidacy.”

      That’s the kool-aid he fed everybody. He told everybody he had a plan. The people who drank the Kool-aid voted for him and now the “you had my back and now I have yours” thing is starting. Appointing a close friend because he collected a half million dollars to help him get elected? I can see where this is all going already. The “good ole boy” syndrome. When does it end? It’s enough to make a person nauseous.

      • Settle down. This is a common occurence that all mayor-elects do. I could see Dave having similar members to his transition team with a few exceptions (e.g. substitute Madison Nguyen for Xavier Campos) Quit whining!

        • So, in other words you can say whatever you want to say, but when I exercise that right, it’s whining. I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that you voted for him? Maybe what I have to say is a little too close to what is true.

        • Quien sabe, Kathleen?

          BTW, why did you ask me? I didn’t post on this thread. Did you mean to ask Cousin Cortese?

          • Rose is all over the place, so I’m sort of surprised you’ve never bumped into her. She’s native american, organizes all kinds of pow wows for the local tribes, is heavily involved in a lot of latino functions (La Raza Round Table, Story Road business, etc)

            Really shocked you don’t know her Kathleen. I think I’m more shocked to see her on Sams panel.

        • I have been involved in community services (education, workforce, youth services) for 40+ years Kathleen.

  3. It was obvious before the announcement that Eddie Garcia is part of Liccardo’s team.

  4. Business is the one constituency that has much power as elected officials. The simple formula for being an elected is labor for your field operation, progressive tech for your money. svlg’s influence is explained by this fact…

  5. Please remember these two “stupid ” smiles , because inside of four years they will be up on Corruption charges . Bank on it !