Joan Buchanan

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Joan Buchanan
Joan buchanan.jpg
Member of the California State Assembly
from the 16th district
15th district (2008–2012)
In office
December 1, 2008 – November 30, 2014
Preceded byGuy S. Houston
Succeeded byCatharine Baker
Personal details
Born (1952-10-04) October 4, 1952 (age 66)
San Francisco, California
Political partyDemocratic
ResidenceAlamo, California
Alma materUniversity of California, Santa Barbara

Joan T. Buchanan (born October 4, 1952)[1] is a former Democratic Party public official and former school board member from Alamo, California. She was a member of the California State Assembly from 2008 to 2014. In September 2009, Buchanan lost a bid to succeed Ellen Tauscher in the U.S. Congress.

Pre-political career[edit]

Buchanan graduated from UC Santa Barbara.

Before the age of 30, she retired from the private sector, after obtaining the position of Director of Commercial Operations at Delta Dental.[2][3]

While raising her five children locally, Buchanan served for 20 years on the San Ramon Valley School Board, including 4 terms as president.[3][4][5] Buchanan's budgeting and organizational development led to SRVUSD being ranked among the top 5% of all school districts in California. Over 94% of the district's graduating seniors attend college.[3]

Buchanan also served as Vice-President of the San Ramon Valley School Age Child Care Alliance and helped bring childcare services to San Ramon elementary schools.[3] In addition, she successfully led the 1994 "No on Vouchers" campaign to preserve funds for public schools.[3]

2008 California State Assembly campaign[edit]

Buchanan successfully ran for State Assembly in 2008. She ran in California's 15th district against Republican San Ramon Mayor H. Abram Wilson. Assembly District 15 includes areas of Contra Costa, Alameda, Sacramento and San Joaquin Counties. Buchanan won the election by 52% to 48%.[6]

2009 Congressional campaign[edit]

On March 18, 2009, Buchanan's hometown Congresswoman Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D CA-10) was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security. A special election to fill her seat took place in 2009. Buchanan ran in the Democratic Primary to replace Rep. Tauscher.[7] She lost to Democratic former Lieutenant Governor John Garamendi.

2015 state senate campaign[edit]

In December 2014, Buchanan announced that she would run for Mark DeSaulnier's seat in the State Senate. DeSaulnier resigned to represent California's 11th congressional district in the US House of Representatives. She lost in the primary election on March 17 to Democrats Susan Bonilla, and Democrat Steve Glazer. She has since endorsed Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla in her State Senate Campaign.


Buchanan received the California Teachers Association State Gold Award and Alamo Rotary Club Citizen of the Year.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Assembly Member Joan T. Buchanan - Biography
  2. ^ McKinley, Jesse (2009-07-04). "Congressional Race in California Draws a High-Profile Cast". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
  3. ^ a b c d e Perrault, Michele (2008-08-27). "Election Year Report Candidate Visit Updates". CSU's Office of Advocacy and Institutional Relations. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
  4. ^ Thomas, Luke (2009-06-16). "Buchanan Kicks Off Campaign to Replace Tauscher". Fog City Journal. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
  5. ^ Kraushaar, Josh (2009-03-26). "Wide-open race for Tauscher seat?". Politico. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-02-01. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
  7. ^ Vorderbrueggen, Lisa (2009-03-27). "CD10: The potential candidate rundown". Contra Costa Times. Retrieved 2009-06-13.

External links[edit]