The November 1984 Presidential election - Reagan vs. Mondale. BCA was the Mondale Campaign in Berkeley, as part of a strategy to help the BCA City Council candidates benefit from the expected massive anti-Reagan turnout of Democrats.
Having learned from November 1982, BCA concentrated upon persuading these extra November voters into casting ballots for the entire ticket, which meant the BCA Council slate on this poster, prominently labeled "Democrats for Berkeley".
Having won four seats in 1982, victory by only a single candidate this time would mean a BCA majority at last.
The BCA slate consisted of attorney Don Jelinek, who had been a civil rights movement lawyer in the south 20 years earlier. He was also famous for saving the Ashby Bart Station Flea Market from being evicted. Don also displayed humor, a rare quality in Berkeley politics.
Maudelle Shirek, is the ultimate survivor/mentor of the progressive movement. She had been the central part of a black community group that persuaded Ron Dellums to run for the City Council in 1967, launching his political career. Now Maudelle would win her own place on the Council in 1984 and become the left's solid rock.
Maudelle was 73 years old at the time of this 1984 race, by far the eldest on that BCA slate. But she outlasted everyone else. Continuously re-elected, Maudelle served for 20 years on the Berkeley City Council, until 2004, breaking every modern record for unbroken longevity in city office. At some point after her 90th birthday, she was considered to be the oldest elected official in California, perhaps even the nation.
How to properly honor Maudelle's service was the issue in 2005. Congressional Republicans blocked the naming of Berkeley's main post office after her, proving that the blacklist for leftists is still alive in Washington. The Berkeley City Council then decided to name old City Hall after Maudelle Shirek as a fitting tribute.
Nancy Skinner, was making another try in 1984 to become the first U.C. student elected to the Council. Six candidates had failed before her on April Coalition/BCA tickets. But none had ever made the race again. Nancy was also attempting to become the first environmentalist on the Council.
Ann Chandler, a public health professional, also took the lead on other issues, including gay rights. She introduced ordinances to ban cigarette smoking in public places and prohibit cigarette vending machines. Berkeley set an example for the anti-smoking movement. Ann had been a key leader in the BCA organization for many years, helping, raise funds, and doing whatever was needed for BCA to survive the bad times.
On November 6, 1984, with the largest turnout in recent memory, the entire BCA slate swept to victory, crushing three conservative incumbents. Thanks to consecutive November triumphs, BCA would now have an 8-1 City Council
It was a success story beyond anyone's wildest dreams.