Longtime County Supervisor Ellen Pirie announced her support today for Zach Friend to succeed her as county supervisor. Pirie, who has served three terms on the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors, decided months ago not to seek re-election. At least five county residents have indicated interest in succeeding her on the Board.
Pirie applauded Friend’s commitment to public safety and local government.
"I've known Zach Friend for six years and I've seen how hard he works for the public," she said. "He's an extremely capable individual who is committed to keeping Santa Cruz County a wonderful place to live and raise a family."
“Zach's outstanding work as a crime analyst for the Santa Cruz Police Department has garnered national attention. His involvement in local politics has shown his dedication to solving local problems and working with people with different points of view. He manages a $23 million dollar budget for the police department, financial experience that few candidates can match. He is the candidate I trust to make the hard decisions that our community will face in the future,” Pirie said.
Friend is a UCSC graduate and has a master's degree in Public Policy from Georgetown University. He has garnered widespread support among law enforcement officials and Second District residents, including Sheriff Phil Wowak, former Watsonville Police Chief Terry Medina, Capitola city councilmembers Sam Storey, Stephanie Harlan and Mayor Mike Termini, Gayle Ortiz, Pat and Jim Shand, PVUSD trustees Kim De Serpa, Leslie DeRose, and Doug Keegan, Paul Elerick, Dan Haifley, Terry Hancock and many others.
"I’ve met with a number of people interested in this position and I believe that Zach Friend is the best qualified candidate," Pirie said. "He shares the values of the people of the Second District – slow growth, environmental stewardship, and responsible and responsive government. He will make a great county supervisor and I feel very good about putting the people and the issues of the Second District in his hands," Pirie said.