Incumbent State Sen. Jeff Golden faces off with Medford Mayor Sparacino
Ashland.news staff report
State Sen. Jeff Golden, an Ashland Democrat and incumbent, faces Medford Mayor Randy Sparacino, a Republican, in the District 3 race Tuesday.
Golden, 72, has served as a Jackson County Commissioner and legislator, as well as a carpenter and contractor, journalist, river guide and host of the “Immense Possibilities” program on public television. He attended Southern Oregon University and Harvard University, graduating with a Master’s Degree from Stanford University.
“I’m asking to return to the Senate to make sure that national pressure to strip women of reproductive rights gets no traction here, and to defend Oregon democracy against ‘stop-the-steal’ uprisings designed to overturn elections,” Golden said, in the Oregon Voter’s Guide.
Golden also said he wants to build on accomplishments during his previous term, including, “protecting our communities with the right mix of rigorous law enforcement, education and human services that lift people towards self-sufficient lives.”
He pledged to rid the Rogue Valley of criminal cannabis operations and to safeguard Oregon from “mega fires,” and support small businesses to boost community economies.
“There’s so much left to do,” Golden said. “I ask for your vote to help get it done. Questions? Ideas? Call me anytime to talk over any issue.”
Golden shared his cell phone in the Oregon Voters’ Pamphlet.
Sparacino, 53, a Republican and 30-year city employee for the city of Medford, has served as mayor of Medford since January 2021. He also served in the U.S. Army Reserve and Oregon National Guard. Starting as a bicycle cadet with MPD in 1990, he worked his way up through the ranks at the department, achieving the role of police chief in 2016 and retiring in 2019. Sparacino also serves as the chief policy advisor for the city of Medford. He holds a Masters degree in management and a bachelor’s degree in social science from SOU.
Sparacino’s resume also lists service as vice-chair on the Rogue Community College Board of Education, chair of the Jackson County Airport Advisory Committee and Oregon Association of Chiefs of Police Board.
Sparacino touts support for law enforcement, and that he “won’t defund them.” He said he has built a stronger relationship between law enforcement and the community during his time as police chief. He pledges to make communities a more affordable place to live, work, and raise a family by demanding accountability and opposing higher taxes.
Sparacino supports what he calls “proper and active management” of forests.
“We should not hold property owners solely responsible, while state lands are held to a different standard,” Sparacino said, in the Oregon Voters’ Pamphlet.
Reach Ashland.news reporter Holly Dillemuth at firstname.lastname@example.org.