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November 6, 2018 — California General Election
Local

City of CupertinoCandidate for City Council

Photo of Liang-Fang "Liang" Chao

Liang-Fang "Liang" Chao

Engineer/Educator/Entrepreneur
8,529 votes (16.21%)Winning
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Strong Policies and Accountability - adopt stronger policies to protect the City from powerful profit-driven interests and hold all developers equally accountable. No favoritism. Hold Lehigh accountable, seek long-term solutions with local control.
  • Thriving Businesses - Strong and diverse businesses, starting with the true revitalization of Vallco with thriving retail, entertainment, fitness and customer-facing businesses. Apprenticeships to prepare young adults for higher income careers.
  • Integrated Planning for Housing, Office & Transit - Quality affordable housing for families seniors & people with disabilities. Action plans for affordable housing while maintaining quality of life. Reliable and Efficient transportation solutions.

Experience

Experience

Profession:Cupertino Union School District Trustee, Engineer
CEO, MindX (2017–current)
Board of Education Trustee, Cupertino Union School District — Elected position (2016–current)
Software Engineer, Quickturn/Cadence Design Systems (1998–2016)
Visiting Researcher, Technical University of Munich, Germany (1996–1998)
Assistant Professor, Department of Computer and Electrical Engineering, Iowa State University (1993–1996)

Education

Princeton University Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Computer Science (1993)
National Chiao Tung University Master of Arts (M.A.), Computer Engineering (1988)

Community Activities

Co-founder, Better Cupertino - a community group for transparency, accountability and community engagement in local government (2014–current)
Board Member, YMCA Camp Campbell – outdoor science education & overnight camps (2016–current)
Housing Chair, League of Women Voters, Southwest Santa Clara Valley Chapter (2018–current)
Representative for CUSD Board, Safe-Route-to-School (SR2S) - Cupertino/Sunnyvale (2016–current)
Fellow for teaching STEM, EnCorps (STEM Teachers Program) (2017–current)

Biography

Dr. Liang Chao has lived in Cupertino for 20 years, where her two sons attend public schools. She is now an elected member of the Cupertino Union School District Board, where she has brought positive changes to rebuild trust. Liang proactively proposes better policies and interfaces with the community to bring issues of concern to the attention of the school district administration.

Liang holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Princeton University, and has taught at the university level in the United States and abroad prior to moving to Silicon Valley. After a long career in high-tech, Liang now focuses more on education and community issues, while initiating a small education startup for enrichment activities through tech.

In 2017, Liang received the CREST (Cupertino Recognizes Extra Steps Taken) Award from the City of Cupertino for her contributions to our community.

Liang enjoys serving community with the Lions Club, the League of Women Voters and Sierra Club. She also volunteers to teach Computer Science and math to middle and high school students.

Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • Art Cohen, Board Vice President, Cupertino Library Foundation and Cupertino Chamber of Commerce Board Member
  • Gopal Kumarappan, Cupertino Library Commissioner
  • Betty Yuan, CEO of Northern California Chinese Culture Athletic Federation (李競芬, 北美华人体育协会執行长)

Elected Officials (6)

  • Patrick Kwok, Director, Secretary, Cupertino Sanitary District
  • Steven Scharf, Councilmember, City of Cupertino
  • Grace H. Mah, Board Member, Santa Clara County Board of Education
  • Michael Goldman, Councilmember, City of Sunnyvale
  • Lynette Lee Eng, Councilmember and Vice Mayor, City of Los Altos
  • Lydia Kou, Councilmember, City of Palo Alto

Individuals (64)

  • Jerry Liu, Cupertino Planning Commssioner
  • Liana Crabtree, Cupertino Library Commissioner
  • Kai Brown, President, Cupertino Education Assoc.
  • Maria Schinella, former President, SEIU Local 521 (CUSD)
  • Lisa Laguna, President, CSEA Chapter 13 (CUSD)
  • Muni Madhdhipatla
  • Anna Wang, Special Needs Community parent and Vice President of Friends of Children with Special Needs
  • Dave Villafana, former President, Cupertino Education Assoc.
  • Hua Zhong
  • Susan Kirsch, Founder Livable California
  • Ignatius Y. Ding
  • Jon Willey
  • Hua Wen
  • Tara Sreekrishnan
  • Ron Canario
  • Maggie Luo
  • Winston Shiah
  • Yunqian Qi
  • Tessa Parish
  • Amit Panditrao
  • Phyllis Dickstein
  • Nidhi Jain
  • Madeline Kasof
  • Eric Schaefer
  • Howard Huang
  • Carrie Oleary
  • Tow Wang
  • Khyati Upadhyay
  • Henry Choi
  • Greg Schaffer
  • Eric Carlson
  • Joan Chin
  • Kitty Moore
  • Bih Shiow Liu
  • Luke Lang
  • Francine Gordon
  • Ranjit Kumar
  • Lisa Warren
  • Sophia Badillo
  • Randall Shingai
  • Sandia Yeaton
  • Nicole Woon
  • Mette Christensen
  • Peggy Griffin
  • Yung Luy (Ray) Hing
  • Isabel Tserng
  • Ravi Kumar
  • Dr. Gregory Anderson
  • Danessa Techmanski
  • Yue Wang
  • Trish McAfee
  • Bill Hershey
  • Larissa Wen
  • Sandy Lee
  • Matthew R. Miller Sr.
  • Alan Penn
  • Fumi Matsumoto
  • Yuwen Su
  • Dongming Yao
  • Caryl Gorska
  • Ruhua You
  • Pamela Hershey
  • R. Wang
  • Vinod Balakrishnan

Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

Liang’s Values are what guide her decisions as she represents the 18,000 children and their parents on the Cupertino Union School Board, and will continue to guide her if she is elected as your city council member.

INTEGRITY FIRST!

Transparency, evidence-based decision making, and fiscal responsibility for equitable solutions that benefit residents and local businesses.

RESIDENTS ARE THE DRIVERS!

We, the people - not outside forces - should decide what we build, or don’t build, in our own city. There is no excuse for tolerating hypergrowth that will permanently burden infrastructure.

FAMILIES AND SCHOOLS ARE THE CENTER

Our children depend on us for quality education and safety. School overcrowding and traffic congestion affect our family lives every day.

HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT

What we do here and now will impact generations to come.

Position Papers

Roadmap to a Better Vallco and a Better Cupertino

Summary

We shouldn’t be forced to choose between two bad options at Vallco. Do you believe Cupertino residents deserve BETTER?

Better Vallco: A Community-friendly Vallco with a significant portion for retail, shopping, entertainment and more, not just 4% of the entire project as in the recently approved Vallco Tier 2 Plan. Suburban in scale. Sufficient parkland and sufficient parking space. Moderate amount of housing. A plan that is well publicized and well discussed in the community before its approval.

Better Cupertino: A Cupertino where the City Council engages with the community early on in the decision-making process and throughout so that there are no surprises. A Cupertino where developers respect the community and only submit sensible projects because the sensible City Council won’t be pushed to accept over-sized projects.

Here's a Roadmap for a Better Vallco and a Better Cupertino

Step 1: Pause the Bad Option - Referendum the recently approved 2018 mega Vallco Specific Plan (Tier 2) to put it to a public vote by 2020 or earlier through a special election, at Council’s discretion and giving time for community input for Better Vallco options.

Step 2: BETTER Leadership - Elect sensible City Council members who would hold the developers and city staff accountable for their actions.

Step 3: Hold the Developer Accountable - The Council directs the staff to seriously follow all city and state laws on the SB 35 project if Developer wishes to go forward. Either the compliance issue will be called into question or the developer won’t be able to profit as much. Thus, the Developer will be open to a better Vallco plan.

Step 4: BETTER Vallco - Re-start the community process to come up with a better and reasonable Vallco plan under a reasonable City Council, who will only accept a reasonably-sized plan that meets community needs and improves the housing shortage without overwhelming traffic and other infrastructure.    

Step 5: Let the Residents Decide - At the ballot box in 2020 or a special election earlier, the voters would choose between a better Vallco plan or the 2018 mega Vallco Specific plan

Remember: A sensible city council would only accept sensible projects.

 

Cupertino is at a critical crossroads

Summary

Cupertino is at a critical crossroads. And we, the People, should be the drivers of our future.

 
Cupertino is at a critical crossroads. Suburban atmosphere versus densification with 13 story buildings, as seen in the recently approved Vallco Tier 2 Plan. Do we want balanced growth or more office space in exchange for token benefits? 

No more Council Members who collaborate mostly with developers and special interests, while leaving the residents in the dark. No more Council Members who say they care, and then rubberstamp whatever dense projects put before them. No more Council Members who say they care about schools, but reduce benefits for schools to get more funding for their pet projects. No more.

We need Council Members who believe in grassroots democracy, and ask tough questions to keep the city staff, developers and polluters accountable. We need Council Members who have a track record for providing oversight over City Government.

As a member of the Cupertino Union School District (CUSD) Board, I have been able to quickly turn things around and have brought many positive changes to CUSD by resolving long-standing issues, including hiring a new Superintendent, better use of technology, and reducing administrative costs. Several leaders from all three employee unions endorsed Liang for City Council. I have earned trust and respect of both parents and the staff and by getting things done.

I have studied the city's General Plan and reports on city and regional planning, and challenged consultants when the reasoning or assumptions do not match the project conditions. I am well-respected for my knowledge and writings to inform Cupertino residents about projects that will affect them. I believe in evidence-based decision making after effective community engagement.

Cupertino is at a stalemate for the revitalization of Vallco specifically because the City Council majority has been pushing for more office space at Vallco, which resulted in a tug of war against everyday hardworking residents who value quality of life. The challenges we've faced have helped awaken and unite many Cupertino residents. The revitalization of Vallco will finally move forward with a City Council who respects and values everyday hardworking residents.   We, the People, should be the drivers of our future.

Videos (3)

Meet the Candidate - Liang Chao — September 23, 2018 City of Cupertino

Cupertino City Council Candidate Liang Chao presents her views in a two-minute video.

— September 23, 2018 City of Cupertino

Watch and overview of Liang's experience working on behalf of Cupertino and its schools. Liang has lived in Cupertino for 18 years and has a strong vision of what Cupertino and its school districts could be. Before being elected to the Cupertino School District Board of Education, Liang volunteered her time in classrooms and for school activities. In 2016, Liang helped lead groups of residents to work on behalf of Cupertino and its schools.

— September 23, 2018 Liang Chao for Cupertino City Council 2018

Cupertino is at a Critical Crossroads, a campaign speech given by Liang Chao, describing Liang's values and platform, and why she is running a campaign for residents to "Take Back Cupertino."

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