Don’t miss final Visalia City Council candidates’ forum on October 24

The Visalia Chamber of Commerce along with the Sun-Gazette is putting on a Visalia City Council Candidates’ Forum Monday, October 24 at 210 Cafe. Doors open at 5:00pm and candidates will be there to meet with the attendees as they arrive.

The forum starts at 5;30 with  Gail Zurek, President CEO of Visalia Chamber of Commerce as the co-moderator.

“Our goal is to help our community make important, informed decisions,” said Zurek.

All candidates will be participating in the forum except Kris Korsgaden from District 5 who declined the Chamber’s invitation.

The candidates are:

Visalia City Council District 3

  • Brian Poochigian
  • Heather L. Carter


Visalia City Council District 4

  • Marie Line-Labbee
  • Emmanuel Soto
  • Bob Ainley


Visalia City Council District 5

  • Steve Nelsen


Visalia City Council District 1

  • David Standley Farris
  • Liz Wynn
  • Justin Bolton

The Chamber will be determining the order of opening statements and seating by having each candidate roll dice. The candidate with the highest number will begin opening statements for their district.  Districts will be grouped together, and order will follow from that grouping. The highest roller for each district will begin, followed by the second highest district.  After opening statements, responses to questions will rotate.


Each candidate will be asked to provide an opening answer to the following question: 

Please introduce yourself, why you are running for office and what defines you.  Each candidate will be given one minute to answer.

When answering questions, if the candidate references another candidate by name, the referenced candidate will be given the opportunity for a 30-second rebuttal.

Audience members will be invited to submit questions via 3×5 cards provided at their seats. Questions will be submitted to Reggie Ellis, publisher of the Sun-Gazette and a Visalia Chamber of Commerce Board Member. They will combine similar questions, look for questions with a broad base appeal, and Reggie will ask those questions of the candidates.

The forum will wrap up at 7:00 p.m. with the candidates giving a 1-minute closing statement of their choosing.

Use your voice

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