James Gore is a Sonoma County native who was born in Healdsburg and raised in the 4th District. The Gore family has deep roots in Sonoma County’s community and has been in the Bay Area for 6 generations. James’ father partnered in founding a successful vineyard management company, and his mother worked as dental assistant in Cloverdale, Healdsburg and Santa Rosa.
Most recently, James served as a presidential appointee as Assistant Chief of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). During this service, he led nationwide conservation efforts at the intersection of agriculture, business, and the environment. In an effort to enhance both a vibrant economy and protect our nation’s natural resources, James advocated for and led efforts to expand services in persistent poverty areas with underserved communities - leading to the creation and deployment of USDA’s persistent poverty initiative, StrikeForce for Rural Growth and Opportunity.
James also helped lead efforts on climate change mitigation and the protection of Pacific salmon habitats. He created and deployed the NRCS Pacific Salmon Habitat Improvement Partnership, which yielded $12 million dollars in federal funding to West Coast watersheds, including the Russian River. He also collaborated with the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors as well as local environmental and agricultural stakeholder groups to leverage federal resources to support Sonoma County and region-wide initiatives. He was a participant on the White House Rural Council and the Know Your Farmer, Know your Food Taskforce. When James first entered the Administration, he served within the office of the Secretary of the USDA, where he worked on management priorities including civil rights, business streamlining, diversity hiring, employee safety on the border, and labor management interaction.
While in Washington, D.C., James was an active voice regarding Northern California policy issues, gaining feedback and building partnerships with supervisors and community groups to address concerns at all levels of government. The relationships Gore established between these groups is something he will continue supporting on the Board of Supervisors to ensure Sonoma County is equipped with the tools needed to address these pressing issues and leverage partnerships and resources at the state and federal level.
Currently, James serves as the Co-Leader for the Working Landscapes team of the California Economic Summit. The Summit brings together leaders from throughout the state to take action on California’s most pressing issues, including infrastructure, 21st century workforce, regulatory efficiency, rural/urban connections, and health and wellness. He is also leading initiatives in Northern California on conservation, ending food waste, and building a stronger alliance between agriculture and the environment.
James graduated from Cal Poly and then served in the United States Peace Corps as an agricultural and natural resources volunteer in Bolivia, South America. There he worked with community members to build water management systems, better manage agriculture production, and of personal importance, developing a health and hygiene campaign that successfully linked seven isolated communities around medical and dental care and education. Upon his return from the Peace Corps, James worked in the private sector with a management consulting firm, where he represented California agriculture on international affairs and trade. In his free time, he continued to serve the Peace Corps community, and was elected to three terms as President of the Board for the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers in Washington, D.C.
James was raised in the 4th District, living in Cloverdale, Healdsburg and the Mark West area of Santa Rosa. He attended Jefferson Elementary in Cloverdale and then graduated from Montgomery High in Santa Rosa. James has a deep understanding of the issues and opportunities facing the 4th Supervisorial District and wants to ensure his daughter, sister, brothers, and fellow community members are able to enjoy all Sonoma County has to offer for generations to come.
James Gore holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Agribusiness from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo and a Master’s Degree from George Washington University. He is fluent in Spanish and Italian. James Gore lives in Healdsburg where he and his wife Elizabeth are raising their two-year-old daughter, Opal. On September 21, 2014, the Gore family welcomed the birth of their second child, Jacob.