Former Santa Clara Mayor Patty Mahan Passes Away

By Robert Haugh

According to multiple sources, former Santa Clara Mayor and City Councilmember Patty Mahan passed away on Saturday, October 28, 2023.

Mahan was one of the Mission City’s best known and longest serving elected officials.

She was elected to the City Council in 1994, 1998, and 2016. 

She was elected Mayor in 2006 and 2010, defeating John McLemore twice.

She served as Santa Clara’s Mayor when the 49er Stadium campaign won at the ballot box in 2010.  She was a leading advocate for the stadium.

Mahan resigned from her City Council seat in 2020 due to health issues.

During her career, she also had some set backs.

Mahan lost her election for the Board of Supervisors in 2006 to Ken Yeager.

She was also found to have violated the City’s Lobbyist ordinance in 2016 while running for City Council.


  1. @Matt Dillion you mention SC is the youth sports capital of the world? Please do explain what you base that opinion on. I would argue it ranks toward the bottom. Please do give some context as to what amazing facilities or programs exist in the city boundaries that you speak of.

  2. Politics aside, our deepest condolences to the family during this difficult time. I thank her and her family for their service to our city.

  3. Mr. Haugh
    Thank you for putting this out there, your publication is quickly becoming the “Go To” place to learn about what is really happening in our City.
    Note…. a recent delusional rant by Miles Baby. Wow… to even consider that you can fix a parking issues by trying to slam even more into a tight space is a tough one to fully understand… note, same geographic space, yet he now wants to incorporate a brand new park, the International Swim Center along with moving The Very Popular Youth Soccer Park. At the very same time, turn 141 parking spaces used for the Youth Soccer Park into 1,0000 VIP parking spaces….
    All in the name of making everything better for the 49ers / our City?
    Sorry, delusional does not even begin to address this latest “49er Proposal”.
    Sorry to digress so quickly…
    But that’s just how stark the coverage is between you and everyone else locally like to view our City.
    Bravo again for your 7 years of hard work.
    I’m not sure how much more local coverage our former Mayor is going to get. I hope the SF publications get involved, otherwise not many of the local residents will ever learn of her passing.
    She deserves the attention, both positive and negative, regardless of how anyone feels, she and her family are true Santa Clara Legends.

    So on a very similar point.

    I wish we (City of Santa Clara) could have had a “Patty Mahan Day” while she was still with us. For all I know, It may have been offered to her and her family, and they may have declined. But that is how you begin to treat people who serve the public.
    So maybe we can still fix this issue. How about naming a Park after not just her, but her whole family…..
    With her around, it would have been a a fun, positive thing for our City to focus on for at least a Day or two.
    Did she make a mistake or two?
    Answer… so does every other leader in the history of mankind. No one is perfect.
    And….at this point, who cares. Her life, and her family’s life long commitments to our City need to be celebrated. (PERIOD)

    By the way…. I can think of another local family that falls into this same category.
    Let’s not screw that one up as well.

    Burt Field

    • I am sad to hear that Patti is gone. We loved her.

      LG and G, The Happy Warrior, also deserve our love.

      SC is the Youth Sports Capital of the World.

      Miles is becoming more irrelevant with every rant.

  4. Mary, I’m with you. Patty and I disagreed on a number of things, but the column could have been more about remembering a person that loved and served her city, even if we didn’t always agree on what was best for the city. Robert, you columns usually read the room better than this, I think.

  5. Your “set back” comments are unnecessary. Patty provided much more in the way of positive service to her city as well as her family before her.

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