Campaigns, Civic Duties, and Climate Change

Written by Hillary Tran and Amy Liu (Class of 2023)
Photos by Ms. Kravitz (U.S. Government teacher) and Amy Liu

On Monday, September 26, the DVGS U.S. Government class attended the Ukiah City Council Candidates Forum to delve into local politics and support an IGDVS teacher, Ms. Thao Phi, on her campaign to become a city council member. She was one of five candidates on the podium, speaking about promoting renewable energy, affordable housing, a more beautiful natural environment, and more. Her campaign focuses on four core ideals: love for the city, compassion for the community, joy in collaboration, and equanimity in all conditions.

During the forum, a moderator asked the candidates for their experiences and stances in a wide variety of topics, from water resources to recent police scandals. Rather than a debate, the forum was more conversational and accessible, as the candidates took turns discussing immediate, local issues that were significant and of interest to Ukiah residents.

Members of the audience were also given the opportunity to write questions directed to the candidates. The seniors wrote quite a few, touching upon topics of mental health for youth and climate change. Hillary Tran, a senior interested in political science, wrote a question on sustainable practices that was actually raised to the candidates during the event. “Without open discussions, debates, or forums like these, there is no way voters will get to see their candidates deliberate in action. It was really exciting to get them to think and resolve on the spot for ambiguous questions,” she remarked.

Special thanks to Jin Jr Shr, Ms. Kravitz, and Ms. Farley! The election for Ukiah city council member will be held on November 8, 2022. We wish Ms. Phi the best on her campaigning journey!

If you’d like to know more about Ms. Thao Phi’s campaign, visit