SF’s Newsom to talk politics at Squaw Valley | SierraSun.com

SF’s Newsom to talk politics at Squaw Valley

Sun staff report

San Francisco’s Gavin Newsom is known more as the mayor of the most liberal city in the nation and for his support of gay marriages than his entrepreneurial efforts, such as the PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn.

The 40-year-old businessman-turned-politician, who many pundits say will run for California governor in 2010, is set to visit North Tahoe on Friday. Newsom will be sharing his views on risk taking in politics at a presentation held by the Squaw Valley Institute at a place Newsom is familiar with ” the PlumpJack conference center.

The mayor holds a large stake in PlumpJack ventures outside San Francisco including Napa and Squaw, according to reports in the San Francisco Chronicle. Newsom’s annual statement of economic interest released in April reported that the mayor has at least $3 million in interests connected to the PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn, as well as retail stores and a cafe affiliated with the Squaw venture, the Chronicle reported.

Newsom also owns property linked to a Napa winery and the ski resort worth $120,000 to $1.2 million, the financial documents show. In addition to the $233,000 salary he earns as mayor, Newsom collected between $141,000 and $251,000 in income from his stake in the winery, ski resort and other business interests, according to the Chronicle.

On Friday, Newsom’s appearance at the Squaw Valley Institute will focus on how politicians take on controversial issues.

In a recent address to students at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, Newsom said, “A lack of risk taking is the biggest problem in politics today. We like politicians who shake things up in the abstract, but when they really take action, people complain. Most political leaders end up taking the easy route.”

Squaw Valley Institute is a non-profit organization that brings programs with artistic, cultural and educational values to the region.

Newsom’s presentation begins at 7 p.m. in the PlumpJack Conference Center, Squaw Valley. Tickets are available at http://www.squawvalleyinstitute.org up to 24 hours before the event or at the door if space allows. General admission is $10.