Their Biographies, Issue Positions, Voting Records, Public Statements, Ratings and their Funders.
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Tom Torlakson's Biography

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Full Name:

Tom A. Torlakson




Wife: Mae; 2 Children: Tiffany, Tamara

Birth Date:


Birth Place:

San Francisco, CA

Home City:

Concord, CA



MA, Education, University of California, Berkeley, 1977

Certificate, Teaching, University of California, Berkeley, 1972

BA, History, University of California, Berkeley, 1971

Superintendent of Public Instruction, State of California, 2010-2019

Assembly Member, California State Assembly, District 11, 2008-2010

Senator, California State Senate, District 7, 2000-2008

Member, Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors, 1980-1996

Chair, Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors, 1984, 1989, 1994

Member, Antioch City Council, 1978-1980

Founder/Chair, California Task Force on Youth and Workforce Wellness

Former Co-Chair, Local Government Caucus

Former Member, Smart Growth Caucus

Member, Contra Costa Transportation Authority, 1988-1996

Chair, State Route 4 Bypass Authority, 1989-1996

President, Association of Bay Area Governments, 1994-1995

Chair, Highway 4 Task Force, 1981-1988

Adjunct Faculty, Los Medanos College, 2007-present

Former Employee, Kosich Insurance Company

Coach, Antioch High School, 1973-2003

Teacher, Mount Diablo High Schools, 1972-1981

Landscaper, 1977

Fireman, United States Merchant Marines, 1967-1971

Former Member, Antioch Chamber of Commerce

Former Member, California National Organization for Women

Former Member, Concord Chamber of Commerce

Founder/Director, Holiday Run and Walk for Health

Former Member, Kiwanis Club of the Delta

Former President, Many Hands Recycling Center

Member, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People

Member, Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce

Member, Planning and Conservation League

Member, Save San Francisco Association

Member, Sierra Club

President, Mount Diablo Regional Group, Sierra Club, 1966


Recipient of the Merchant Marines Vietnam Service Medal for service in 1968

Antioch Young Man of the Year, 1975

Riverview School Community Award, 1979

Outstanding Coach, Oakland Cross Country Invitational, 1978 & 1979

Kiddies Award - Outstanding Contributions to Youth in Contra Costa County, 1983

County Supervisors Association of California Fun Run - 14 years as "Fastest Supervisor in California"

National Woman's Political Caucus Good Guy Award, 1987 & 1997

The California State Association of Counties President's Award, 1997

Hospice Bike-a-thon: Brentwood to Kettleman City, 200 miles in 11 hours and 18 minutes, 1989

Mt. Diablo Classic Triathlon, 5th Place, 2 hours 41 minutes (1 mile swim, 21 mile bike, 8.3 mile run), 1991

Maya Award for contributions to the Hispanic community, 1991

The California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions, Legislator of the Year, 1997

The California Independent Public Employees Legislative Council Legislator of the Year, 1997 and 1998

Legislator of the Year by California Chapter of the American Planning Association, 1997
24-Hour Fitness Escape from Alcatraz, 5th in the 45-49 age group, 126th overall out of 759 participants, 2 hours 41 minutes 45 seconds, (1.5 mile swim, 18 mile bike, 8.5 mile run), 1998

1998 Housing Leadership Award presented by the California Housing Consortium and Housing California

Legislative Leadership Award by the California Business Industry Association, 1998

Outstanding Leadership Award for establishing public policy toward the development of affordable housing by Contra Costa Association of Homeless and Housing Service Providers, 1998

Bethel Island International Triathlon, 1st in the 50-59 age group, 23rd out of 92 participants, 2 hours 37 minutes 35 seconds. (1 mile swim - 23 mile bike and 8.5 mile run).

"Political Courage" Award by the California Nurses Association, 1999.

Lions for the Blind - Blind Center - Bike-A-Thon, October 1999. 200 miles from Antioch to Huron, 11 hours 11 minutes 58 seconds.

Community College Association Legislator of the Year (October 2009)

Computer Using Educators Legislator of the Year (March 2009)

National Trails Award for Public Service by American Trails (November 17, 2008)

California Association of Urban School Administrators "Certificate of Appreciation Award" (October 17, 2008)

Award of Appreciation from the County School Facilities Consortium "In Appreciation for Your Leadership and Support for County School Facilities that are Modern, Safe and Complete" (September 2008)

Certificate of Appreciation from the Bay Point Municipal Advisory Council in recognition for years of service to the Bay Point community (August 5, 2008)

HELP Group Autism Legislative Briefing Award of Appreciation for "leadership and commitment to creating brighter futures for children with autism" (July 23, 2008)

Lamorinda Democratic Club Honor "for his years of outstanding service to the Lamorinda Community in the California State Legislature" (June 20, 2008)

California School-Age Consortium Afterschool Visionary Award for "tremendous work promoting and advancing afterschool programs" (May 20, 2008)

California Industrial and Technology Education Association and Foundation's Legislator of the Year Award (March 14, 2008)

California Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation & Dance Presidential Citation for "dedicated leadership and tireless legislative support of quality physical education programs for all children." (March 7, 2008)

American Legion Auxiliary Citation of Participation from the American Legion at the Harding-Noia Post 161 (November 11, 2007)

California Business Education Association Legislator of the Year Award (October 14, 2007)

Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Alameda County Appreciation Award (August 2, 2007)

California WIC Association "WIC Champion" for outstanding contributions and continued dedication and support for Women, Infant, and Children issues. (June 20, 2007)

"CrimeFighter" award from Fight Crime: Invest in Kids (March 2007)

California League of High Schools Legislator of the Year (January 13, 2007)

League of California Cities Co-Legislator of the Year (September 7, 2006)

Building a State of Equality Award, Equality California (May 8, 2006)

Alumni Associations of the University of California Educator of the Year (March 7, 2006)

California State University Legislator of the Year (March 2006)

"Thank You" Award from the East Bay Division: League of California Cities for Work on and Support of Proposition 1A to Protect Local Government Revenues. (October 2005)

"Legislator of the Year Award," California Bicycle Coalition (September 2005)

Affordable Housing Leadership Award from the East Bay Housing Organizations (June 2005)

Elected Official of the Year: Sacramento Regional Bike Commute Week (May 2005)

Legislator of the Year -- California Association of Park and Recreation Districts (April 2005)

Legislator of the Year -- Joint Award: California Public Health Association North/ Southern California Public Health Association (2005)

ALCOSTA Service Center Council and California Teachers Association Gold Award for Outstanding Legislator 2005 (May 14, 2005)

Philippine Cultural and Historical Association Certificate of Recognition in appreciation of his exceptional contribution to the Filipino/American communities and embodying the spirit of PCHA (May 14, 2005)

City of Hercules Proclamation recognizing Senator Tom Torlakson for his efforts in supporting the interests of the City of Hercules (May 10, 2005)

"Community Making a Difference" Award, Mothers Against Drunk Driving California State Organization, April 2005

"Presidential Citation," California Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance. March 2005

"Elected Official of the Year," California Transportation Foundation, 2004

"Legacy Award," California State Parks Foundation, 2004

"Certificate of Appreciation," East Bay Regional Park District, 2004

"Thank You For Your Support Award," California Waterfowl Association, 2004

"Second Annual Victor Jones Memorial Lecture," UC-Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies and UC-Berkeley Political Science Department, 2004

"Legislator of the Year," California Transit Association, 2003

"California Proud to be Smoke Free Award," The Coalition for Tobacco-Free Campaigns, 2003

"Transportation Stewardship Award," Women's Transportation Seminar, Orange County Chapter, 2003

"Gordon Cologne Award," California WaterReuse Association, 2003

"California State Legislator of the Year" Award, California Public Health Association --North, 2003

"Helping People, Changing Lives," California/Nevada Community Action Partnership, 2003

"Legislator of the Year," Metropolitan Transportation Commission, 2002

"The Platinum Apple Club," California Hunger Action Committee, 2002

"Legislator of the Year Award," California Business Properties Association, 2002

"Margaret Sanger Award (for Responsible Leadership)," Planned Parenthood, 2002

"Special Friend Award," American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, 2002

"Engineering and Utility Contractors Association, We Dig California Award, 2002"

Legislator Recognition Award 2002, California Library Association

Mountain Star Award by Save Mount Diablo, 2001

Legislator of the Year by Californians Against Waste, 2001

Legislator of the Year by the California Park and Recreation Society, 2001

"Outstanding Public Service Award - 2000" from the California Public Employees Association

California Independent Public Employees Legislative Council, Legislator of the Decade, 2000

California Independent Public Employees Legislative Council, Legislator of the Year, 1998 and 1999

California Redevelopment Association, Co-Legislator of the Year, 1999

California Nurses Association, "Political Courage" Award, 1999

California Housing Consortium and Housing California, Housing Leadership Award, 1998

California Building Industry Association, Legislative Leadership Award, 1998

Contra Costa Association of Homeless and Housing Service Providers, Outstanding Leadership Award, 1998

California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions, Legislator of the Year, 1997

California Chapter of the American Planning Association, Legislator of the Year, 1997

Hobbies or Special Talents:

Health and Fitness, Running, Bicycling, Triathlons, Reading