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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
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United States

U.S. House of RepresentativesCandidate for District 11

Photo of Roger Allen Petersen

Roger Allen Petersen

Retired HR Manager
83,341 votes (27.9%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • National Defense - This is the primary responsibility of the Federal government. Military and Intelligence services have been shortchanged and need maintenance and upgrades to keep us safe.
  • Jobs & the Economy - Remove disincentives and restore economic growth to create interesting work for the ninety million who have stopped looking for work.
  • Spending - Return to zero based budgeting and realistic funding for Social Security & Medicare. Replace the very broken ACA and fix the Veterans Administration.



Profession:Human Resources Professional - Retired /U.S. Army Vietnam Veteran
Vice President International International Compensation & Benefits, BHP Shared Services U.S.A. (1995–1999)
President & Representative Director, William M. Mercer Limited of Japan (1985–1995)
Director International Benefits, Dart & Kraft, Inc. (1980–1985)
Director International Benefits, Dart Industries, Inc. (1975–1980)


California State University Long Beach Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in Marketing, marketing, east Asian studies, U.S. history, macro & micro economics, literature, sociology, psychology, geology, botany (1974)

Community Activities

Member, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1525 (2014–current)


From August 1993 Roger has been a resident of Contra Costa County. He is a Westerner. Born and partly raised and educated in Oregon and California. He has worked as a janitor, cooking fries and burgers at McDonald's, bookkeeper and customer service representative for the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power.

Over the course of his three year enlistment he served in the U.S. Army as a Military Policeman at a nuclear missile site in Detroit, Michigan, at Cam Ranh Bay Vietnam and at the United States Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth.

Roger's university education book ended his military service starting in Political Science  at the University of Oregon and continuing after military service at El Camino College, and in East Asian Studies at Cal State Dominguez Hills, Waseda University Tokyo, Tokyo Nihongo Center and finally at California State University Long Beach. Completing six and a half years of undergraduate study he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in Marketing.

Roger's 36 year career in Human Resources began with the complex responsibility for complying 36 defined benefit and defined contribution retirement plans with the U.S. Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. From that base of administrative know how his responsibilities expanded over the years to include medical plan, disability plan, vacation plan, dental plan, stock option, executive compensation and related human resources issues. Following ten years in a Fortune 30 company he moved into international consulting forming a Human Resources consulting company in Tokyo Japan from 1986 to 1993. Roger has worked for five Fortune 200 companies involved in consumer products, management consulting, minerals mining, electronic manufacturing and hi-tech mostly in the international arena and for ten years providing guidance at the board of directors level. He has conducted business operations in 35 countries worldwide over the course of his multifaceted career.


Roger's wife has been married to him for 45 years. They have four adult children and four grandchildren.

Questions & Answers

Questions from The League of Women Voters of California Education Fund and California Counts, a public media collaboration. (4)

The Federal Government plays a part in California water allocation and use through a variety of laws.  What, if any, legislation would you support in an effort to handle water shortages caused by the current and any future drought?
Answer from Roger Allen Petersen:

The first part of the question is the most vexing. The Federal government’s overreach through a variety of laws is most likely the principle barrier to the efficient, economical and environmentally responsible courses of action to mitigate future droughts. Too many bureaucracies with narrow interests to include the Bureau of Land Management, The Army Corps of Engineers, The EPA, just to name the obvious. Clearly use of Colorado River water needs some Federal involvement in that the water impacts multiple states as well as the U.S. relationship with our neighbor Mexico.

That said much of California’s watershed lies within the borders of California and should be managed by Californians. Further, there is no shortage of water available to California. With hundreds of miles of Pacific coastline there is more than enough water available for desalination.

California’s water problems can be solved by:

·         Conservation

·         Drip farming as opposed to sprinkler and flood farming

·         Building and expanding reservoirs

·         Restoring overused aquafers

·         Recycling waste water

·         Desalination


Legislation that I would support is that which would untie California state government’s ability to manage its own water resources. Water management in California is primarily a state and local government’s issue, not a Federal issue.

Should immigration laws be changed?  What changes would you support?  Please explain why.
Answer from Roger Allen Petersen:

The United States of America has been and still is today a magnet and a magical place for many impoverished, persecuted victims of social unrest, war or those who feel economically oppressed. In short, they come to the United States seeking freedom and opportunity. What the United States offers is a level of safety and security not found elsewhere. The United States is a safe haven for capital. It is a safe haven for refugees. Much of the United States is in fact owned by foreign nationals and foreign governments because the U.S. has a legal system that is clear and an enforcement mechanism that is robust. All underpinned by the most creative and dynamic economy the world has ever seen. The good news is that the U.S. economy is well regulated and very robust. The bad news is that our immigration laws are no longer well-regulated and enforcement is not robust. Respect for our borders and laws must be restored in order to bring credibility to those seeking to immigrate lawfully and for those that are here lawfully. To not enforce our immigration laws is to heap disrespect on those who followed the law and that is corrosive to the fabric of our society. Immigration laws must be fixed, enforced and done so with respect to those who have immigrated lawfully. All persons entering the U.S. must have a valid entry permit/visa.To obtain an entry permit or visa each individual must undergo an appropriate background check. Entry permits and visas are issued at U.S. consular offices and embassies. Permits and visas require photo ID, fingerprinting and related biometrics. Visa overstays, as in the past, will be repatriated by immigration authorities. Qualifications for green card immigrants must be revised to selectively admit those who can add value to our community. The availability and number of H1B Visas permitted must be reviewed to ensure only required skills are being sought and only at market competitive levels of compensation. 

What, if anything, does the U.S. need to do in order to address national security and terrorism? Please explain your answer in detail.
Answer from Roger Allen Petersen:

Robert Gates, Leon Panetta and Chuck Hagel, all former Secretaries of Defense since 2008 have stated that our military has been substantially degraded over the past several years. Some recent facts:

Out of 276 F/A-18 Hornet strike fighters in the Marine Corps inventory, only about 30% are ready to fly, according to statistics provided by the Corps. Similarly, only 42 of 147 heavy-lift CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters are airworthy.

U.S. military spending has dropped from $691 billion in 2010 to $560 billion in 2015. The cuts came just as the planes were returning from 15 years of war, suffering from overuse and extreme wear and tear. Many highly trained mechanics in the aviation depots left for jobs in the private sector.

So the first priority is to get the military back to mission ready status. This involves recruitment, training, refurbishing existing equipment, bringing new systems on line and research and development. The United States is losing its technological advantage relative to those that are seeking to marginalize the interests of the U.S. and our international security partners.

Terrorism is not new to the U.S. and our allies. We do know how to defeat terrorism and have done so in the past. Support for the sixteen agencies that compose the United States Intelligence Community, is the key to monitoring and interdicting would be terrorists.

The political climate in Washington, D.C. has been extremely partisan in recent years. In that kind of atmosphere, what would you do to get things done while in office?
Answer from Roger Allen Petersen:

Seek common ground to advance the interests of all Americans. Work to compromise without sacrificing Constitutional principles. Do the right thing regardless of party.

Who gave money to this candidate?


Total money raised: $8,790

Top contributors that gave money to support the candidate, by organization:

Employees of Roger Petersen

More information about contributions

By State:

California 100.00%

By Size:

Large contributions (84.19%)
Small contributions (15.81%)

By Type:

From organizations (0.00%)
From individuals (100.00%)
Source: MapLight analysis of data from the Federal Election Commission.

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