Meet The People Making San Francisco's Election Run Safely And Smoothly | KALW

Meet The People Making San Francisco's Election Run Safely And Smoothly

Nov 2, 2020


In San Francisco, there are 588 polling places spread out across the city. And, most elections, the city needs about 3,000 people to volunteer to work them. This year, the Department of Elections got more applicants than ever -- 14,000! They actually had to turn people away. 



Eboni Vann says working the elections is more than just a job.
Credit Anna Rotty
It brings you back to what a community really we have to get back to that essence. I feel like that's really important. - Eboni Vann, Poll Worker Coordinator, SF Department of Elections
Luis Mascarenhas has been working elections for 20 years.
Credit Anna Rotty

KALW spoke to some City Election Officials -- poll workers, inspectors, clerks and coordinators -- at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. The empty concert hall has been transformed into part of San Francisco's Election Headquarters. They shared their thoughts about working behind the scenes of this historic election, making sure it runs smoothly, and safely.


In this environment where there's so much misinformation and distrust in the integrity of the election, this seemed like the best way to kind of combat if someone I knew, knew me and that I was a poll worker it may infuse a bit more trust in the process. - Emily Anderson, Poll Inspector

Local photographer and election official Anna Rotty photographed the people in this piece, as well as many other poll workers and the election officials. To view more of her work, visit her website,

Michael B. Davis, a longtime poll worker, sits for a portrait at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium.
Credit Anna Rotty