Jackie Goldberg and Sharon Stricker
Jackie Goldberg was born in Los Angeles and went to her first demonstration in 1961, influenced and guided by the woman who led Women's Strike for Peace. She attended the University of California at Berkeley where she was a leader in the Free Speech Movement, a student uprising that subsumed the University because the President of the University tried to ban political speech and action on campus. When she returned to Los Angeles, she moved into Echo Park and began teaching in Compton. She met her life partner Sharon Stricker when they joined forces to develop and lead the Integration Project.
Armed with first-hand understanding of the problems and challenges of the Los Angeles public school system, Goldberg ran for and won a seat on the Los Angeles Unified School Board in 1983. Goldberg was elected in an upset victory over the incumbent and served two terms. During her second term, Goldberg served as President of the Board from 1989 through 1991.
In 1993, Goldberg won a seat on the Los Angeles City Council 13th District, and became the first openly lesbian woman to hold office on the City Council. She was re-elected without opposition in 1997.
Goldberg's Council legacy includes authorship of the "Living Wage" ordinance which guarantees a living wage and benefits to all employees working directly or indirectly for the City of Los Angeles: her work in the economic revitalization of Hollywood: the creation of model after-school enrichment programs in every middle school in the district: and development of the extremely successful "Slum Abatement" program which holds landlords accountable to the City for the condition of their properties and provides an effective system of redress to tenants who have complaints.
Assemblymember Goldberg was elected overwhelmingly to her first term in the California State Assembly on November 7, 2000. Jackie and Sharon married in 2008. Currently Jackie is working at UCLA teaching future teachers.
Sharon Stricker has pursued two parallel courses her entire adult life: the arts, in the form of writing, acting, and directing, and teaching; and political activism in the form of creating or co-founding organizations such as The Integration Project, The NAM Socialist Community School, The Community Education Network.
After graduating from Loyola University in Chicago in 1965, Sharon began a ten-year teaching career in New Jersey and then Los Angeles, California. Here she pioneered the successful use of the arts for improving the education of minority children. At the same time she became keenly award of the inequities, especially in facilities in L.A.U.S.D.
She met Jackie Goldberg in 1976 when they created The Integration Project, and worked for school desegregation in Los Angeles. At that same time, Sharon was co-creating a theatre piece called "Purse Strings", which later won Dramalogue and California Arts Council Awards.
The arts led her into prison. There, along with her writer-partner, Jean Samuel, she co-founded BRIGHT FIRES CREATIVE WRITING PROJECT AT CRC, Norco, California. The project won many grants from the California Arts Council as well as The MS. Foundation. KCET-TV filmed an hour-long documentary of the project in 1990.
At the same time, Sharon was also politically active, working as the first campaign manager for Jackie Goldberg's school board race. From then on, Sharon was always politically active during Jackie's campaigns, and also served as her advisor and sounding board. Together, they co-founded L.A.C.E.R. (Literacy, Arts, Culture, Education, and Recreation) Afterschool programs in Jackie's Council District in Los Angeles. Sharon served as the Co-Founder and Executive Director from 1995-2006. In 2003, she received the national "Coming Up Taller" Award for "outstanding work with underserved youth."
Sharon and her partner, Jackie Goldberg, have been together for over thirty years. They were married in 2008 on the steps of San Francisco's beautiful City Hall and again in their living room in 2009. Sharon and Jackie have one son, Brian, a daughter-in-law Carmen, a grandson Alejandro and were foster parents to two teenage boys.