June Wanish Served 1978-1986
June Wanish ran for council in 1978 and, after receiving the most votes, became not only the first woman on council but also the first woman mayor. Wanish was a key player in bringing the downtown library to Roseville as well as preserving Maidu relics.
What inspired you to run for council?
“I have always been involved with the community. I loved Roseville and felt I could do a good job. I didn’t have a bone to pick with anybody or a chip on my shoulder. I just wanted to be involved and make Roseville the best possible place to live.”
How did it feel to be the first female mayor?
“It felt really good. I was proud but I was also very nervous because, being first, I wanted to make sure I did a good job because if I didn’t I was afraid other women wouldn’t run again.”
Do you feel like you’ve left a legacy for Roseville?
“Since I ran for council, we have always had one woman serving, this year we have three. That’s something that I think we can be most proud of. The women that are here should be proud of their achievements because they are a great asset to the community.”
Pauline Roccucci Served ‘89-98, ‘08-present
Elected in 1989 as Roseville’s second female mayor and the third woman on council. In 2008 election she received the most votes.
What projects have you worked on?
“I helped with bringing the Galleria to Roseville and the trauma center at Roseville Hospital. I also really enjoyed working on the Mahany Aquatics Center pools. It feels good to know that people in this community have a higher level of safety, health care and amenities thanks to the hard work of city staff members. That’s something we should all be proud of.”
What do you hope for future generations?
“I hope that future girls will see these women as role models. I want girls to know they can be a doctor or a mayor and you can make a difference in whatever you like to do. If your passion is with people, there is no greater thing than to get involved.”
Claudia Gamar-Heinlein Served ‘96-98, ‘00-02
Gamar-Heinlein was the first woman to serve as mayor twice, first from 1996 to 1998 and again from 2000 to 2002. She represented the city internationally in Japan and Russia and has been recognized in the Congressional record for her achievements on the council.
Why did you run for council?
“People in the business community kept asking me to run, and one day I finally said yes. I’m so glad I did. I’ve always liked working behind scenes but I really enjoyed working on council and getting to help folks with problems.”
What projects did you work on?
“I am always so pleased to walk into the new city hall because I remember working on it and driving to other city halls around Northern California to see what they had, what they thought they did right and wrong. I feel like we wound up with a really terrific building that represents the city, works well for the community and it’s beautiful.”
Favorite council memory?
“One day my grandson came to me and told me about a girl who was getting hassled by older kids. The mom had gone to the school and had been told that they couldn’t address the issue. My grandson came to me and asked if I could do something so I called the neighborhood police officer to talk to the boys who were hassling the little girl. About a week later I got a card from the mom and the little girl that said ‘thank you for making it safe for me to go school.’ That’s what it’s about.”
Martha Riley Served 1981-1985
Martha Riley worked to make libraries accessible to residents. She also helped in the efforts to build the downtown library as well as the third library at Mahany Park.
How has city council changed?
“We had weekly meetings when I was on council and they weren’t filmed so if we were under scrutiny and people would come to the meetings. It was also a time of growth for Roseville so we were looking at the city as a whole and planning the best way to grow so people could still live comfortably.”
What is a project you worked on that is still around today?
“I worked on the Urban Forest Foundation and put in 15,000 shade trees downtown. I also pushed for schools and parks to be built together or near each other.”
How does it feel to be one of six women on the council?
“I’m very honored. Working with June was very humbling. She was always gracious and kind, she really showed how you should act and was easy to follow. She was someone who made me want to be better prepared than my counterparts for meetings.”
Gina Garbolino Served 2001-present
Gina Garbolino is currently serving her second term as Roseville’s mayor. She has been involved with several commissions and committees to improve the city.
How does it feel to be one of the six?
“I am overwhelmed and very proud and grateful that I’m one of them. There are some big shoes to fill from June Wanish, who set the standard for all of us to follow, Martha who is very hard working and tireless and then Pauline, Claudia and Carol who are all women to watch.”
What do you hope your legacy will be?
“The idea of us leaving a legacy would be wonderful. I really hope so. I’d like to know I helped a good community that gave me a wonderful home and continued to make it a place to come and raise a family.”
How has city council changed?
“There are some very exciting things going on and we are constantly looking toward the future. We are changing certain things about the way we are developing because it is different now. We are trying to do the city’s business in the best way we know how realizing we’re never going to be what we were 18 months ago.