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  Collier, III, Zander Y.
NameZander Y. Collier, III
San Jose, California , United States
Born Unknown
ContributorJoshua L.
Last ModifedJoshua L.
Feb 12, 2004 04:22pm
InfoI am the son of Barbara and Zander Collier (Jr.). I was born in Mountain View, California at Kaiser Hospital on May 8th, 1970 at 6:00 am.

I spent the first three years of my life in Los Gatos. I don't remember hardly any of this except some apocryphal tales about a neighbor's cat named Butterscotch that I used to pick up and carry everywhere. I also remember playing in the park that is right next to what is now Ace Hardware (at Lark and Los Gatos Boulevard).

All my grandparents have now passed on, but to give you a taste of my life, I'm happy to share a bit of them with you.

My paternal grandfather, Zander Sr. worked on at the Oakridge National Laboratory in Oakridge, Tennessee. When World War II broke out, he was transferred to Los Alamos, New Mexico where he worked on the Manhattan Project. After the conclusion of World War II, he, my grandmother and father relocated Livermore where he worked at the Lawrence Livermore Labs in Berkeley and Livermore. My father's mother, Martha was a homemaker and had a special skill and patience in training animals. Zander Sr. died shortly after my third birthday of prostate cancer - missing the birth of my brother, Grant, just a few months later.

My father, Zander Jr. grew up in Los Alamos and spent his Senior High School year at Livermore High. He attended San Jose State, earning a Bachelor's degree in Liberal Arts. He subsequently began teaching at Seaside High in Monterey and later earned his Master's, again at San Jose State, while teaching at Saratoga High.

My maternal grandparents were Edwin and Florence Reith. Edwin and Florence came from Spokane WA to the Bay Area, raising my mother, Barbara, and her older sister, Shirley first in Belmont, and then my grandfather built, with his own hands, a house in Los Altos. Edwin was a steelworker and during World War II, managed a crew at the shipyards in San Francisco building ships for the war effort. Afterwards, he continued to work for US Steel until he decided to open up his own metal fabrication shop in the Bayview/Hunter's Point district of San Francisco. Florence worked as a homemaker and a nurse, specializing in the care of seniors. She cooked the best Thanksgiving dinners.

Edwin taught me my most cherished life lesson: That it's the really tough men who have the guts to demonstrate what it means to be gentle. It is a lesson I hope I can pass on.

My parents, Zander and Barbara were high school teachers. Zander (Jr.) taught Industrial Arts at Saratoga High School, Barbara taught English and Debate at Fremont High in Sunnyvale. They met each other while working at Breuner's, selling furniture for extra money. They are now retired.

Of course my parents taught me the most valuable life lessons. From my mother I learned perserverence in spite of obstacles and personal frustration. From my father I learned that there is never shame in truth and honesty, even if that truth and honesty concerns one's own shortcomings and failings.

I attended University Preschool, on Saratoga-Sunnyvale Road in 1974, prior to attending Foothill Elementary, in Saratoga. I attended Kindergarten in 1975 was enrolled in First through Fourth grades there (1976-1980). First grade was a complete culture shock to me compared with Kindergarten. I was rather troubled that the joy of building skyscrapers with blocks and naptime were replaced with the rote of things like mathematics.

Fifth and Sixth grades were attended at St. Andrew's School on Saratoga Avenue across the street from what is now the newly-rebuilt Saratoga Library. (1980-1982)

Seventh and Eighth grades were attended at Redwood Jr. High. (1982-1984)

Freshman through Senior High School years were spent at Saratoga High. I played Water Polo, and swam on the Swim Team. I was appointed by the Student Body Council to serve as the Entertainment Coordinator, and volunteered time to various school activities. I played Rugby on an extracurricular team and also joined the Boy Scout Troop 549. (1984-1988)

By this time, my father had become disillusioned with the profession of teaching. He went on sabbatical from Saratoga High in 1978 and quit teaching in 1979 to take up the work he had done in college, as an electrician. After deciding he could do what his bosses did better than they could, he struck out on his own becoming an Electrical Contractor and starting South Bay Electric.

After my High School graduation, I spent two years at De Anza Junior College in Cupertino. After turning 18, I became the Assistant Scoutmaster of the Boy Scout Troop I was previously a member, 549. I continued to volunteer in this capacity until I was 20 and left for UCSD. (1988-1990)


Click here for a large (slow to download) image of the District 24 boundaries

I transferred to University of California San Diego, earning a Bachelor's of Arts, double majoring in Economics and History. (1990-1994) While there I worked while completing my studies. I was a custodian, and a campus shuttle bus driver. I also served on the campus humor paper. One of the activities that I did participate heavily in was exploring the Internet.

In 1993 I was a registered Democrat but changed my affiliation to Libertarian because I felt that the Democrats were paying lip-service to values that I held dear: Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Assembly, Rights to Privacy. I changed political affiliation also because of Democratic ambivalence to the first Gulf War. I protested that first Gulf War because I felt it was a grand corporate welfare scheme that sacrificed our soldiers in a land of little strategic interest so that oil companies had their assets protected and were assured of a profitable bottom line. When I learned that the Libertarian Party wanted to end the Drug War, I was sold.

After graduation I thought I'd prepared myself for a career as a stock broker and financial planner. I was mistaken and after 4 months living the wrong choice, I moved back to the Bay Area and found work as a software tester. Seeking a career that was a bit more fun and better suited to my disposition, I took radio broadcasting classes at Foothill College.

After interning at KSJO radio for a year, I was hired on as a sound board operator and subsequently became a weekender on the air and also became the Public Affairs Director. I am currently working part time at Mix 106.5 as a sound board operator.

It was also during this time that I found day employment with Concentric Network (now XO Communications) doing software development, but mostly doing network testing and clustered webserver load balance testing, along with the associated documentation.

But of course, everything changes. I became politically active in 2001 after the election of George W. Bush, fearing things like "Free Speech Zones" and the "Patriot Act". Sadly September 11, 2001 made those things a reality only that much faster. People became afraid and burrowed. I was made afraid too. But I refuse to surrender my Civil Liberties without having made a good fight for them first.

I was elected as the Publicity Chair for the Libertarian Party of Santa Clara County in 2001, was subsequently elected as Activities Chair in 2002, and 2003. I am now currently serving as Local Organizing Chair in 2004, hoping that my campaign activities can dovetail into some momentum for building a movement that will help end the two-party hegemony over the American political system.

I have lived my whole life in California and believe I have something to give back.

I am thirty-three years old. I am not married and have no children, but I am currently dating a very special woman. I believe in Gandhi's Maxim that we must live the change we wish to see in this world, and that is why, after I was asked to run for State Assembly, that I have decided to do so with as much vigor as I possibly can.


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  11/02/2004 CA State Assembly 24 Lost 5.26% (-54.16%)
  03/02/2004 CA State Assembly 24 - L Primary Won 100.00% (+100.00%)