Starosciak Resigns From Council; Says Heartbreak Over Mayoral Defeat Lingers

SAN LEANDRO CITY COUNCIL | San Leandro Councilwoman Joyce Starosciak is resigning from the City Council. The long-time public servant read a farewell letter near the conclusion of Monday night’s meeting citing the residual heartbreak over her stinging mayoral defeat in 2010 as a main reason for her decision. Starosciak said she will be moving to the Roseville area this summer. Her seat is termed out this December.

Her early departure will likely set up a political fight in search of an appointee to serve the remaining four months of her second term. According to the City Charter, depending on the exact date of Starosciak’s resignation, the council has 60 days to appoint a new member. Three candidates to replace Starosciak in November have already expressed interest. They include, Benny Lee, Chris Crow and Darlene Daevu.

“Born and raised in San Leandro, I have often said that the soil is literally in my bones,” Starosciak said. However, she added she remains “heartbroken” over her disappointing third-place finish in the 2010 mayoral election, ultimately won by Stephen Cassidy. “In order to move on from the daily reminder of this loss it has become necessary to leave,” she said.

Starosciak’s sensitivity to losing the election was very real and apparently still evident. On one occasion, following a city council meeting following the November 2010 election results, Starosciak nearly bursted into tears in response to a claim by former Mayor Tony Santos that her decision to run against him inadvertently handed the election to Cassidy. Just two weeks ago, following a homeowners meeting at Heron Bay, Starosciak admitted she “really wanted to be mayor.”

The reasoning for leaving the council before the end of her term was designed, she said, is to allow a smooth transition for her children in their new surroundings. Her son starts high school in the fall, she said, while her daughter begins junior high.

“I love San Leandro. It has been a wonderful place to raise my family. I am thankful and honored to have been able to serve in elected and appointed office for 14 years in this very special city,” she said. “I am confident that San Leandro is on the right path and will soon be a world-class city with a new hospital, revitalized shoreline and a bustling downtown.”

Starosciak public service may not be over, though. She told the council a possibility existss for her to be appointed by the governor to the Department of Transportation as a deputy director of legislative affairs.

Beginning with an appointment to the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission in 1993, Starosciak spent four years on the San Leandro School District Board of Trustees from 1994-1998 and was elected to the City Council in 2004.

Categories: Joyce Starosciak, resignation, S.L. City Council, san leandro, Stephen Cassidy, Tony Santos

12 replies

  1. I assume one runs for mayor because you love a place so much. But you leave this place just cause you lost? Doesn't make much sense to me.


  2. There seems to be a history of SL Councilmembers leaving their offices before their term is over- I remember Gordan Galvan. Who else?


  3. By MW:

    Frankly, the whole thing, in other words her “reason,” sounds fishy to me.

    In other words, I am wondering whether there is some scandal about to break and/or whether her supposed “voluntary” retirement was not really voluntary.


  4. She was forced into a run off for her council seat, how did she figure she had the support to be mayor?


  5. Dave Karp also left before his term was over. 🙂


  6. Does the charter say whether the appointed person has to be from the district?


  7. It's the same crap Newt Gingriche when he lost the Speakership. He pouted, took his ball and went home. Forget about the people giving them the honor to represent them. It's all about their broken hearts – disgusting!


  8. Let's give Joyce a break-it is difficult to run for public office and it is difficult when you lose. I do understand her emotions. I have not said much since the 2010 election, but no doubt in my mind Joyce caused my defeat, but I don't hold it against her as she did want to be Mayor of a City where she grew up. I just wish she had waited to 2014 however, but such is life. I do wish her the best-I have known Joyce since she was a young child and I always considered her Dad and Mom as a friend; they worked hard to raise their childern and helped me and our HOA throughout the years. I remain in San Leandro and wish she whould do so herself, but this is the US and you can live wherever you want; hopefully, she will have a happy experience in the Sacramento area. Tony Santos


  9. Roseville? That's next door to Sacramento. Moving closer to the political action or perhaps closer to the political state jobs. Sounds like a plan to me. Can't you just feel the love for San Leandro?


  10. God help us all if that mongoloid Chris crow gets his foot in the door


  11. What about her cop husband? That's a long commute isn't it?


  12. Councilwoman Starosciak has served the city well and has always had its best interests at heart. I understand why such a political defeat might leave her dismayed. She worked well for her constituents and city employees, understanding the needs of the city's residents while respecting the employees who provided services. I wish her well in her new endeavors.


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