Carrillo Challenging Rowe In The Third District

Chris Carrillo, who previously worked as James Ramos’s assistant chief of staff when he was Third District San Bernardino County Supervisor, has committed to running against the current Third District supervisor, Dawn Rowe, in 2024.
In 2018, after Ramos was elected to the California Assembly, he made a recommendation to his board colleagues just before he resigned to head off to Sacramento that they appoint Carrillo as his board replacement for the two years then remaining on his supervisorial term. Nevertheless, the remaining members of the board of supervisors – Curt Hagman, Robert Lovingood, Josie Gonzales and Janice Rutherford – elected to invite applications for the post, to which 48 Third District residents responded, including Carrillo.
Despite Ramos’s recommendation, the board skipped over Carrillo, winnowing the field of 48 to 13 semi-finalists, those being former Third District Supervisor Dennis Hansberger, then-Barstow Mayor Julie Hackbarth-McIntyre, former Twentynine Palms Councilman James Bagsby, Loma Linda Councilman Ron Dailey and then-Loma Linda Mayor Rhodes Rigsby, former Chino Councilman/then-current Big Bear Councilman William Jahn, former Assemblyman/then-State Senator Bill Emmerson, Congressional Candidate Sean Flynn, then-Republican Central Committee Chairwoman Jan Leja, former San Bernardino Councilman Tobin Brinker, former Westlake Village Mayor Chris Mann, then-San Bernardino Mayor Carey Davis and former Yucca Valley Councilwoman/Mayor Dawn Rowe.
Not surprisingly, because Hagman, Lovingood and Rutherford were Republicans, 12 of those 13, all except Dailey, were Republicans. While local elected offices under California law are officially nonpartisan, in San Bernardino County, party affiliation is a major factor in who holds political office. Ramos, a Democrat, was spurned in his recommendation of Carrillo, who is also a Democrat.
The 13 semifinalists were reduced to five finalists – Rowe, Jahn, Emmerson, Flynn and Rigsby, Republicans all. Gonzales, the only Democrat on the board, made an appeal to her colleagues that at the next public hearing where they were to interview those five that they make up for the previous sleight to Carrillo by making a special arrangement to interview him. Hagman, Lovingood and Rutherford agreed to do so, but the session with Carrillo had all the earmarks of an afterthought. The momentum was clearly moving in Rowe’s direction. Gonzales, the lone Democrat remaining on the board, consigned herself to the inevitable and voted with her colleagues to have Rowe replace Ramos for the two years remaining on his term.
Carrillo contemplated and even began to prepare to run against Rowe in the 2020 election. Nevertheless, he pulled out of that race after his mother suffered a serious health challenge in 2019.
Carrillo’s mother was an attorney, as is Carrillo. They were working on some of the same cases when she grew ill. In 2020, she passed away. That same year, Rowe was elected to continue to serve as Third District supervisor.
Next year, Carrillo vowed, Rowe will not have the political cakewalk she had in 2020.
In his quest to represent the Third District, Carrillo said, he will “Put people first, family first, community first and politics last.”
A member of the board of the East Valley Water District Board, Carrillo represents Highland and a portion of San Bernardino. He was appointed to the board in 2014, and elected to the board in his own right in 2015 and reelected in 2020. In his capacity as a water board member, he championed the construction of the Sterling Natural Resource Center, which was designed to treat up to 8 million gallons of wastewater daily, which is then used to recharge the local Bunker Hill Groundwater Basin.
“Throughout my career in public service, I’ve made it a commitment to deliver for people and improve lives,” Carillo said. “Too many families in San Bernardino County are being left behind by politicians who put themselves ahead of residents. From Redlands, Yucaipa, and Yucca Valley to Barstow, Crestline, and Big Bear Valley, our communities face unique challenges. I’m running for supervisor to put people first and stand up for common sense solutions.”
Carrillo was first appointed to the East Valley Water District Board of Directors in 2014. He ran for election in his own right in 2015. Carrillo gained reelection in 2020.
As an attorney, in 2016 Carrillo represented former San Bernardino County Deputy Fire Chief George Corley in an action against the San Bernardino County Fire Protection District in which it was alleged Corley was terminated because of age discrimination. After trial, the jury rendered a verdict in which it found that Corley’s age was a substantial motivating reason for the district’s termination of his employment and awarded damages for lost earnings. When the county appealed the case, Carrillo continued to represent Corley before the state appellate court, prevailing when that panel returned a published decision upholding the trial court in Corley v. San Bernardino County Fire Protection.
As a consequence, Carrillo is on excellent terms with the union representing the county’s firefighters.
The San Bernardino County Professional Firefighters, International Association of Firefighters 395, which represents over 600 firemen and firewomen with San Bernardino County, Big Bear City, Big Bear Lake, Colton, Loma Linda, and Montclair fire departments, has endorsed Carrillo in the 2024 election.
In announcing the endorsement, Jim Grigoli, president of IAFF Local 935, stated, “Chris’s knowledge of county government will provide the experience needed to end the disastrous financial mismanagement that has cost San Bernardino County taxpayers millions of dollars in lost federal funding. Chris understands the concerns of District 3 and will be ready on day one to deliver results for local communities. The residents of District 3 deserve a new representative who will restore competence and integrity to the county board of supervisors. That’s why Local 395 is proud to support Chris Carrillo for supervisor and we look forward to helping him win.”
A Georgetown University graduate with a Master of Applied Psychology degree from Claremont Graduate University and a juris doctorate from Loyola Law School, Carrillos primary focus as an attorney is on employment litigation. He has experience in real estate and public vs. private possessory and nonpossessory law.

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