San Francisco was the first city to switch to RCV, adopting the system to elect all city officials by a charter amendment in 2002 and holding its first RCV elections in 2004. In 2006, Oakland voters passed a charter amendment to adopt RCV for city officials, with 69% of voters in favor of making the switch. In 2010, Berkeley and San Leandro adopted ranked choice voting and in November of 2010 Oakland, Berkeley, and San Leandro all held their first RCV elections, with Oakland’s highly competitive mayoral election receiving national media attention. In 2011, San Francisco had a series of extremely competitive races with RCV, including Mayor and several Districts on the Board of Supervisors. And in 2012 Oakland, Berkeley, and San Leandro used RCV for a second time, with competitive races for Berkeley’s mayor, and City Council positions in Oakland and San Leandro.
Jean Quan was elected in 2010 as Oakland’s first female Mayor and in San Francisco 16 of the city’s 18 offices elected by RCV are now held by people of color.