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San Diego Councilwoman Marti Emerald Won't Seek Re-Election Next Year

San Diego City Councilmember Marti Emerald at council meeting February 25, 2014.
Milan Kovacevic
San Diego City Councilmember Marti Emerald at council meeting February 25, 2014.

San Diego City Councilwoman Marti Emerald said Wednesday her battle against breast cancer played no role in her decision not to seek re-election next year.

At a meeting of the City Council's Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee, which she chairs, Emerald described her health as "excellent."

She was diagnosed with breast cancer last year and has been undergoing treatment that caused her to lose her hair — which has been growing back recently. The physical impact of her treatments has caused Emerald to miss occasional City Council meetings.


"It's just time to turn a page to a new chapter in my life," Emerald said.

"It has been my extreme honor and privilege to serve, it's just been a highlight of my life," the former television troubleshooter said. "And we still have a year and a half to go, so I'm not gone yet."

She said she would announce her future plans next Wednesday at a 10 a.m. news conference.

Emerald represents a stretch of the city that runs from San Diego State University to Southcrest, including many economically disadvantaged neighborhoods. Her District 9 was created in time for the 2012 election, which she won handily.

Before that, she occupied the council seat now held by Scott Sherman. Changing districts placed her in a gray area of the term limits law, which limits council members to two four-year terms. She would have been eligible to run again if she chose.


Next year's election cycle will feature at least three open seats — hers and those of Council President Sherri Lightner and Councilman Todd Gloria, who are being termed-out.

The seats of Councilmen Mark Kersey and Scott Sherman are also up for grabs next year.