Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Scott Peters is a civic leader who has made creating jobs, protecting the environment, and improving the quality of life in San Diego his life’s work. When so many in Washington seem interested only in political gamesmanship and blaming others for the problems we face, Scott is a problem solver with a record of bringing people together and putting politics aside to get results.
Standing Up for What’s Right
Scott learned the importance of standing up for what’s right from his father, a Lutheran minister, who worked for housing desegregation and improved race relations after riots had ravaged Detroit in the 1960s. Scott took those same values to the courtroom – serving as a supervisor in the Office of San Diego County Counsel before starting his own firm. He’s successfully taken on tough fights, such as when he sued a shipyard that refused to prevent contaminated runoff from spilling into San Diego Bay. This lawsuit led to new nationwide standards for water quality around these facilities.
Reforming Local Government
As San Diego’s first City Council President, Scott pursued greater accountability and efficiency in government, with a results-oriented approach. He led the creation of a new council/mayor form of government with an independent budget review function; created an independent audit function; hired the City’s first Independent budget analyst; completed over $2 billion in downtown redevelopment including a new major league ballpark that generated more than 19,000 jobs; delivered an 80% reduction in sewer spills and beach closure days; banned smoking and alcohol from city parks and beaches; reconstructed the Torrey Pines South municipal golf course to host the 2008 United States Open Championship; set new standards for energy and water conservation in new development; and completed major district infrastructure, including Highway 56, the North Torrey Pines Bridge, utility line undergrounding, two new fire stations, a new police substation and branch library, and 24 new parks or major park improvements.
Growing Our Economy
Scott went on to become chair of the San Diego Unified Port District – a major economic engine that produces tens of thousands of high-skill, high-wage jobs for San Diegans. The Port manages the state tidelands in and around San Diego Bay, which produces $3.3 billion in direct economic impact to the region and supports jobs for more than 40,000 San Diegans. These include maritime and working waterfront jobs, such as shipbuilding and manufacturing, that pay average salaries of $52,000 and $59,000, respectively. Scott has also worked extensively as a community leader to grow our economy, improve education, and protect the environment – including service as a member of the boards of the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, CleanTECH San Diego and the UCSD Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board, and as Chair of the Climate Initiative at The San Diego Foundation.
Scott earned his undergraduate degree from Duke University and worked as an economist for the United States Environmental Protection Agency before attending New York University School of Law. He and his wife of 25 years, Lynn, are 22-year residents of the 52nd District. They live in La Jolla and have a daughter and son.