I am a daughter of immigrants. When my parents arrived, unable to speak English, with little money and no support network, they found refuge in Chinatown. Mom started off sewing clothes and my dad worked in kitchens. My parent worked long hours, saved, became citizens, and opened a small family restaurant.
Although my parents never had the chance to go to school, they understood the role of education in opening up opportunities. My sisters and I were the first in our family to attend college. And like many families who struggled to carve out a place to call home, I learned about the value of hard work, of perseverance and of the importance of being given a chance to succeed. It is my family that grounds me in public service.
As Assessor, it is my view that we need to ensure that the doors remain open for those who come after us. That means working hard everyday to foster strong communities and to create a resilient and stable financial foundation for our City’s future.
In San Francisco, Assessor Chu is responsible for generating close to $3 billion in annual revenue which pays for public education and other services like housing programs, public safety, senior services and street maintenance and cleaning.
Carmen was elected to her first full term as Assessor in 2014 and is currently the only Asian American Assessor elected in the state of California. She has served as the President of the Bay Area Assessors’ Association and chairs efforts to standardize assessment best practices on behalf of the California Assessors’ Association.
Her leadership in implementing new technologies and improving business processes has delivered real results for San Francisco. Over the last few years, Chu and her team has closed the gap on a decades old assessment backlog and brought in over half a billion dollars in additional revenues above and beyond projected growth helping to balance budget deficits and pay for additional investments in homeless services including navigation centers, housing, transportation and other local services.
Throughout her public service, Carmen has focused on addressing bread and butter concerns affecting local neighborhoods – from rebuilding local playgrounds and libraries like West Sunset and Larsen Plane Park, to funding additional police officers, to cutting red tape for local small businesses and developing financial strategies to launch Healthy San Francisco, our local universal health program.
She volunteers as a trustee for San Francisco’s $24 billion pension fund, is involved with the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association, and holds two degrees in Public Policy, including a Master’s degree from UC Berkeley and a Bachelor’s degree from Occidental College. Previously, she served as San Francisco Supervisor and Director for the Golden Gate Bridge Board.
Carmen lives with her husband Scott, a San Francisco firefighter, in the City’s Sunset neighborhood.