April 23, 2018 - National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) Endorses Eleni Kounalakis for Lt. Governor


Kounalakis secures dual endorsement from progressive healthcare workers union in her race for Lt. Governor.

San Francisco, CA — Today, the Eleni Kounalakis for Lt. Governor campaign announced the endorsement of the National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW). The National Union of Healthcare Workers is the fastest growing healthcare workers union in the country with nearly 14,000 members who are dedicated to improving the lives of caregivers and patients.

“The National Union of Healthcare Workers is proud to support Eleni Kounalakis for Lt. Governor,” said Sal Rosselli, President NUHW. “Eleni understands the need to support healthcare workers to ensure they have fair pay, great benefits and adequate staffing and that they can organize and unionize to better their working conditions for them and their patients. She also understands that our broken healthcare system can only be fixed by a single-payer system. NUHW looks forward to working with Eleni when she is Lt. Governor to ensure that we provide quality healthcare for all.”

“I am so proud to have the endorsement of the National Union of Healthcare Workers,” said Kounalakis. “Now more than ever, we need to push for universal healthcare so all families can get access to affordable, quality health care. We also must stand up for healthcare workers who are on the front lines of delivering care to the most vulnerable, and yet are often the most vulnerable themselves. They deserve fair wages and benefits and safe working environments. As Lt. Governor, I will fight to ensure we achieve universal healthcare here in California and that we ensure healthcare workers have the pay and protection they deserve.”

Kounalakis comes armed with a growing list of endorsements from prominent Democratic elected officials and organizations, like U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, the California Federation of Teachers, Equality California, Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, California State University Employees Union SEIU 2579, Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs, Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts Jr., Representatives Nanette Barragan, Anna Eshoo, Zoe Lofgren, Doris Matsui, Jerry McNerney, Jimmy Panetta, Eric Swalwell, and Mike Thompson, former State Senator Mark Leno, Assembly members Blanca Rubio and Kevin McCarty, Los Angeles City Councilmembers Gil Cedillo and Nury Martinez, and CA Women’s List, and over 20 Democratic clubs across California.

Kounalakis is the only Democratic woman in the race for Lt. Governor. Her unique blend of experience as a successful business woman and job creator and government experience as a U.S. Ambassador has resulted in Kounalakis vaulting to the front of the field for the Top Two primary.

As of the last filing, she had raised $2.4 million for her campaign, more than any other candidate in the race, and has more cash on hand than any of her opponents as we head into the critical last few months of the primary campaign.

Kounalakis is the only candidate in the race to visit all 58 counties. She spent the summer and fall traveling across the state, meeting with Democratic central committees, clubs, and activists, and community leaders. She has received support from hundreds of delegates to the CDP convention and has built a base of grassroots support that will help her advance to the general election and win in November.

Kounalakis is a businesswoman and diplomat. She was appointed by President Barack Obama as Ambassador to Hungary in 2010. She is a lifelong Democrat and five-time delegate to the Democratic National Convention and worked as an advocate for early childhood education as a member of California's First 5 Commission and the Blue Ribbon Commission on Autism.

She was appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown to lead the California International Trade and Investment Advisory Council and served as a member of the First 5 Commission, where she worked to provide and improve opportunities for early childhood education. Prior to serving our country in the diplomatic corps, she was president of AKT Development Corporation in Sacramento, where she helped deliver tens of thousands of affordable homes for middle-class families. Kounalakis was born and raised in Sacramento and is a graduate of the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business and Dartmouth College. She and her husband, Markos, live in San Francisco where they are raising their two teenage sons.