Eugene Fields Claims Upset Victory at DGI Straw Poll Endorsement

IRVINE, CA — In a major upset, Eugene Fields, one of two Democratic challengers vying for California’s 68th State Assembly District, received the most votes in the Democrats of Greater Irvine (DGI) Straw Poll.

Fields, a civil rights advocate and associate professor, edged Irvine City Council member Melissa Fox, 31-30, with 10 votes for no endorsement after both candidates spoke at The Duck Club on Sept. 15. The Democrats are attempting to earn party endorsements in their quest to unseat incumbent Steven Choi.

The vote total did not give Fields the majority vote needed to earn an official direction from DGI on how to vote at the California Democratic Party Pre-endorsement Caucus in October. Instead the two DGI delegates will be allowed to “vote their conscience.”

In a statement, Fields said:

“I was very happy when the results were announced, especially because I asked the members of DGI to vote for No Endorsement so the voters could decide their preferred candidate at the March primary.  

“To come into Assembly member Choi’s backyard and edge a sitting member of the Irvine City Council shows there is excitement for a candidate who stands for the interests of the people, including healthcare and housing being human rights, giving Californians access to higher education, working to solve the homeless epidemic and fighting to keep carcinogenic toxins out of our parks and open spaces.”


Eugene Fields is a husband, father and resident of Orange, CA. He is the son of a Japanese American who was unjustly incarcerated in an internment camp during World War II. Eugene is a former reporter for the Orange County Register, winning state awards for his coverage of the largest mass murder in Orange County history. He is a former co-chair of the OCTA Taxpayer Oversight Committee, monitoring the use of an estimated $13 billion of Measure M funds and ensuring that all revenue collected from Measure M is spent on voter-approved transportation projects. He is an award-winning communications professional for CAIR-LA, a civil rights and advocacy nonprofit and an associate professor at Westcliff University in Irvine. Eugene holds a Master of Public Administration from the University of Phoenix.

California’s 68th Assembly District is located in Orange County and includes the communities of Anaheim, Irvine, Lake Forest, Orange, Tustin, North Tustin and Villa Park.

CONTACT: Eugene Fields, 714-717-5015 or