John Sawyer’s story is one with deep roots in Santa Rosa. His Great Grandparents immigrated to Santa Rosa from Europe in the late 1890’s. They settled and planted vineyards in rural Bennett Valley, where the family’s original farmhouse stands to this day. It is this history that serves as the basis for John’s continued appreciation and love of the natural characteristics of Santa Rosa.

Bill and Lee Sawyer, John’s parents, raised their three boys to remain true to that history by becoming productive, active members in their community. John’s parents taught him the value of hard work and to always be dedicated, stay committed and never give up. Those traits remain instilled in him today.

In 1976, at age 21, John assumed the title of Manager of Sawyers News, Inc. By this time, the Newsstand had become a Sonoma County institution, as his Great Grandfather, Doc Sawyer and Grandfather Wilbur sold their first Santa Rosa paper in 1945.

Eventually, John became the sole proprietor of the family business up until its closing in 2010.

Wanting to continue his service in the community, John assumed an active role in volunteering. He was first elected to the Santa Rosa City Council in 2004 and served as its Vice Mayor and then Mayor in 2008. John was elected to his second term as Mayor in 2014, and has continued as an active member of the City Council since his Mayoral term ended in December 2016.

In addition to his City Council position, John currently serves as the Chairman of the Board – Santa Rosa Community Health and immediate past Chair of the Sonoma County Waste Management Agency. His current City Council appointments include: Long Term Financial Policy and Audit Subcommittee, Cannabis Subcommittee and the Downtown Subcommittee.

John also served on the Sonoma County Transportation Authority for five years and has held posts on the Downtown Development Association, Neighborhood Oriented Policing Citizen’s Advisory Board, Sonoma County Cultural Arts Council and the Luther Burbank Home and Garden Association to name a few.

As a Fourth-Generation resident, John Sawyer’s vision for our City is one based on his family’s long history in Santa Rosa and an understanding of the value of being committed to this community.

John was born in what is now City Council District 2 and has lived there for over 60 years.

The Sawyer Farmhouse circa 1890′s
The Sawyer Farmhouse Today