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Barbara Bry is an American elected official in San Diego, California. She serves as a member of the San Diego City Council representing City Council District 1. The district includes the communities of Carmel Valley, Del Mar Heights, Del Mar Mesa, Pacific Highlands Ranch, La Jolla, Torrey Hills, Torrey Pines, University City, and the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) campus.[1] Bry has served as President Pro Tem of the City Council since 2017.

Barbara Bry
Barbara Bry Interview.png
Member of the
San Diego City Council
for the First District
Assumed office
December 12, 2016
MayorKevin Faulconer
Preceded bySherri Lightner
Personal details
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Neil Senturia
ResidenceLa Jolla, California
Alma materUniversity of Pennsylvania (BS)
Harvard University (MBA)

On January 2, 2019, Bry announced that she would run for Mayor of San Diego in the 2020 election. In announcing her campaign, Bry touted her background in high tech and support for science, technology, and arts.[2][3]

Life and careerEdit

Prior to running for elected office for the first time in 2016, Barbara spent more than 30 years helping to start companies and create jobs, first working at CONNECT and then becoming an entrepreneur and serving on the initial management team of companies like[4]

In 1998, Barbara founded Athena San Diego, an organization for women in the tech and life sciences community. Athena helps to empower and connect women in the STEM fields.[5]

In 2008, Barbara founded Run Women Run, a nonpartisan organization that inspires, recruits, and trains qualified, pro-choice women to seek elected and appointed office. The organization supports and mentors candidates to lead the charge for reproductive rights and equal representation.[6]

Barbara is married to entrepreneur Neil Senturia. Their blended family includes four grown children, their spouses, and two grandchildren with more on the way.[7]

San Diego City CouncilEdit

The 2016 San Diego City Council election for District 1 featured an open seat since incumbent Sherri Lightner was ineligible to run due to term limits. Bry, a Democrat, was expected to run against Republican Ray Ellis and Democrat Joe LaCava to replace Lightner. However, LaCava announced that he had decided not to run in January 2016.[8] In March 2016, Bruce Lightner, husband to the incumbent Sherri Lightner, and Kyle Heiskala, a policy advisor on Sherri Lightner's City Council staff, pulled papers to run for the District 1 seat.[9]

Since no candidate received a majority of the votes in the June primary, Bry and Ellis were slated to advance to the November runoff election.[10] However, on August 12, 2016 Ellis announced that he would be withdrawing from the election.[11] Despite effectively conceding the race, Ellis's name still appeared on November ballot.[12] Bry was then elected to the City Council in November.

Bry has served as Council President Pro Tem since December 2017.[13] She has taken the lead on several key issues including short term vacation rentals,[14] dockless vehicles,[15] community choice energy,[16] and establishing the Workplace Equity Initiative.[17]

She has also been supportive of an inclusive, innovative economy, urging hiring decisions to be about what a person can do, not who they know or when and where they went to school.[18]

San Diego City Council District 1 primary election, 2016[10]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Barbara Bry 18559 48%
Republican Ray Ellis 12982 34%
Republican Bruce D. Lightner 3,711 10%
Nonpartisan Kyle Heiskala 2,344 6%
Nonpartisan Louis A. Rodolico 707 2%
Total votes 38,303 100%
General election
Democratic Barbara Bry 38,470 65%
Republican Ray Ellis 20,305 35%
Total votes 58,775 100%

Committee AssignmentsEdit

  • Budget and Government Efficiency Committee (Chair)
    • Budget Review Committee (Chair)
  • Economic Development and Intergovernmental Relations Committee
  • Environment Committee
  • Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee (Vice Chair)
  • Rules Committee (Vice Chair)

Source: Office of the City Clerk


  1. ^ "Communities | City of San Diego Official Website". Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  2. ^ City News Service (January 2, 2019). "Councilwoman Barbara Bry announces 2020 bid for San Diego mayor". Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  3. ^ Jennewein, Chris (January 3, 2019). "Barbara Bry Promises to Bring High Tech Experience to Mayor's Job". Times of San Diego. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  4. ^ "Barbara Bry for City Council 2016". Barbara Bry for City Council 2016. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  5. ^ Fair, Karin. "About Athena". Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  6. ^ "About - Run Women Run". Run Women Run. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  7. ^ "Barbara Bry for City Council 2016". Barbara Bry for City Council 2016. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  8. ^ Srikrishnan, Maya (January 8, 2016). "Joe LaCava Bows Out of City Council Race". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved January 24, 2016.
  9. ^ Bowen, Andrew. "Lightner Staffer Moves To Enter District 1 City Council Race". KPBS Public Media. Retrieved April 1, 2016.
  10. ^ a b "Election History - Council District 1" (PDF). City of San Diego. Retrieved 12 January 2013.
  11. ^ Jenkins, Logan (August 12, 2016). "Ellis concedes council race to Bry". The San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved August 12, 2016.
  12. ^ Bowen, Andrew; Ruth, Brooke (August 12, 2016). "Ray Ellis Drops Out Of District 1 San Diego City Council Race". KPBS. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  13. ^ Nguyen, Alexander (December 17, 2018). "City Council Re-Appoints Bry as Pro Tem, Approves Committee Rosters". Times of San Diego. Retrieved December 22, 2018.
  14. ^ BRY, BARBARA. "Why San Diego needs limits on vacation rentals". Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  15. ^ Garrick, David. "San Diego considering crackdown on dockless bikes, including fees, new rules". Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  16. ^ "You searched for "rayman khan" - Voice of San Diego". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  17. ^ "How I'm Empowering Women in the Workplace". Retrieved 2018-09-06.
  18. ^ SHEN, BARBARA BRY & JI. "How San Diego is growing local tech talent". Retrieved 2018-08-23.

External linksEdit