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About Noreen

Noreen_Retouched_Forest_Headshot_cropped.jpgNoreen Evans is an accomplished Sonoma County attorney and former state and local legislative leader.  She has a long record in public service getting things done for the people she represents. 

Evans strongly believes we need open, transparent and ethical government.  And, she has the know-how to make it happen for all of us.

A Bay Area native, daughter of a Marine Corps sergeant and product of California public schools and its state university system, Noreen also has the perspective, temperament and values we need on the Board of Supervisors.

Noreen worked her way through college and law school, earning a bachelor’s degree with honors from California State University Sacramento and law degree from McGeorge Law School at University of Pacific in Sacramento.  After law school, she studied international law at the University of Austria in Salzburg and clerked for a firm of solicitors in Dublin, Ireland.

In 1982, Noreen moved to Santa Rosa, where she started a family, practiced law and soon began a career in public service.   As a citizen activist concerned with planning and growth issues, Noreen was appointed in 1993 to the Santa Rosa Planning Commission.  She quickly gained a reputation as a forceful advocate for sustainable housing and transportation policies and protecting the environment and in 1996 was elected to the Santa Rosa City Council.  

In 2004, Noreen was elected to succeed Pat Wiggins in the State Assembly, representing Sonoma, Napa and Solano counties.  She quickly became a leader on the state level on issues such as the state budget, environment, education, health care, equity, and energy.  In 2010, she was elected to the State Senate.   A progressive leader on many issues, Evans took on then Governor Schwarzenegger on many issues including cuts to the state’s safety net,education, and offshore oil drilling. As a Senator, Noreen fought against the nation’s four largest banks to write the Homeowners Bill of Rights, for the first time giving homeowners protection in foreclosure proceedings.

Evans was a co-author of AB 32, California’s groundbreaking climate change law, and SB 199, mandating toy guns to look like toys.

Evans’ accomplishments on behalf of Sonoma County include writing legislation enabling the Sonoma County Open Space and Agricultural District to help fund preservation of the Jenner Highlands, coastal trail improvements, and restoration projects on the Laguna de Santa Rosa.  She fought to keep our local state parks open during the recession, including Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve. She initiated the fight to prevent the state from charging entrance fees at our local beaches. 

As a member of the Santa Rosa City Council, Noreen worked on restoring Santa Rosa Creek, and supported development of the Joe Rodota Trail and other trails in the Laguna de Santa Rosa. She worked on improving substandard housing and initiated the Neighborhood Revitalization Program bringing after-school programs and anti-gang activities in Roseland. Evans was part of the successful 1996 campaign to adopt Santa Rosa’s Urban Growth Boundaries and the successful campaign to fund the SMART rail. As a Senator, she obtained millions of dollars in funding for SMART to complete the rail line to Larkspur and to build a passenger station at the Sonoma County airport.

Among her many accomplishments Noreen has:

  • Obtained funding for restoration and repair projects at Fort Ross State Historical Park, and kept the park open during recession;
  • Restored funding for rural school bus service;
  • Supported creation of marine preserves off the Sonoma County coast;
  • Wrote legislation protecting North Coast crab and salmon fisheries;
  • Wrote legislation allowing wineries to have off-site tasting room
  • Blocked aerial spraying of pesticides to eradicate pests threatening local grape growers; and
  • Authored and co-authored legislation to, among other things, reinstate tax credits for landowners donating property to state parks,  improve foster care and assist mobile home owners.

As a member of the Board of Supervisors, Noreen is well positioned to represent the 5th District.

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