“I want the judge to know that he ignited a tiny fire.”

In a powerful letter that went viral last June, the Stanford Survivor known only as Emily Doe courageously addressed Brock Turner, the young man who dragged her behind a dumpster and sexually assaulted her while she was unconscious.

Judge Persky listened to Emily's impassioned cry for justice – then he sentenced Turner to only six months in county jail. Prosecutors asked that Brock Turner be sentenced to six years in prison. The minimum sentence for his crimes was two years and he could have faced a maximum of 14 years.

Judge Persky made a special exception for an elite athlete at a top university. Persky reasoned that a longer sentence would have a "severe impact" on Turner. On top of it all, Turner was released early on good behavior after serving only three months of his sentence.

With her compelling words, Emily did more than ignite a tiny fire – she sparked an entire movement to recall Judge Persky and sent the message that survivors deserve better.

This is not an isolated incident for Judge Persky – he has a disturbing history of shielding offenders of domestic and sexual violence from justice – and was recently re-elected to a new six-year term because he ran unopposed in the last election.

We need judges who understand violence against women and take it seriously.

On June 26, 2017 Santa Clara County leaders filed the official Notice of Intent to begin collecting signatures to recall Judge Aaron Persky. Our petition was approved by the county and we began collecting signatures! 

Then, in a last-ditch effort to stop the recall campaign, Judge Persky filed a frivolous lawsuit to avoid the democratic process.

The California Constitution grants the voters the power to recall a judge. We meticulously followed the law to craft our petition and it was approved by the county registrar office. Even the California Secretary of State and Attorney General advocated for our recall effort in court and we prevailed!

Judge Persky’s attempt to derail our campaign and stifle our First Amendment rights is just another reason he needs to be recalled.

The recall campaign collected nearly 100,000 signatures and now the voters will have a choice to recall and replace Judge Persky on the June 5, 2018 ballot.

This is one of the largest county-wide ballot initiatives in Santa Clara County history -- even more, it's rare for a judge to be placed on a ballot to be recalled in the history of California and the nation.

We are confident this is a battle we can win and that it will have an impact not just in Santa Clara County, but across the country.

The recall won’t be easy, but survivors like Emily Doe deserve our help in their fight for justice.

Learn more at recallaaronperksy.com.

Paid for by the Committee to Recall Judge Persky FPPC #1386601

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Show your support for this campaign by endorsing it and sharing why!

  • endorsed

    “It's ridiculous how this rapist was basically told that what he did was not all that bad! Where's the justice? Where's the lesson? He needs to know that what he did was a CRIME and it was WRONG and he needs to account for what he did!!! The judge basically gave him a get out of jail free card, life is not a game.”

  • endorsed

    “Class, race, or privilege shouldn't influence and determine justice for a crime as heinous as sexual assault. No man has the right to use his privilege as an opportunity to exploit and abuse women for his sexual gratification. Nor should any judge use his judicial power to further impound the sexual assault,abuse, exploitation, and oppression of women.”

  • endorsed

    “We can't let these creeps get away with this injustice. Persky is complicit in this and future crimes from the RAPIST Brock Turner. Persky's free pass allows this predator free to commit more sexual assaults.”

  • endorsed

    “92 days is not justice for sexual assault.”

  • endorsed

    “To give hope to the victims of rape that justice can be served and law should be color and social status blind!”

  • endorsed

    “We need better judgement!”

November 16, 2016


Friends --

On Monday night, Glamour Magazine honored Stanford survivor Emily Doe as one of 2016's Women of the Year.

After an emotional introduction from actress Lena Dunham, and a touching performance of Emily's previous statements by Gabourey Sidibe, Frieda Pinto, and Amber Heard, the theater erupted into a standing ovation.

I was honored to accept the award on behalf of Emily and read a statement she had prepared for the evening:

"Thank you for seeing me through my words and giving me a voice without having to see me physically. Thank you for honoring me among the incredible women I'm determined to one day meet..."I am one of so many who have fought before me... so many who have had enough. I stand among millions of groundbreaking Emily Does. I have seen them speaking. I have seen the strength that accompanies healing. Right now, I'm watching the award show from home and know many survivors watching at home too. I hope every survivor is sharing the stage with me feeling proud—feeling part of this too. I am grateful to be among them, and tonight we have won together. With every set back, the world should know every survivor has a story. Every story is our power. Together, we are louder than any system or person who threatens to silence us. Together we are countless and unstoppable. Now, we are indignantly rising. Be excited. Keep going. I'll be fighting alongside you."

Emily's inspirational words motivate us to keep fighting and holding institutions and individuals accountable.

Brock Turner served one month in county jail for every felony sexual assault conviction -- that is not justice. Please, help us recall Judge Persky by contributing now and together we will send the message that survivors deserve better.

Thank you to all who participated in our tweet storm powered up by Thunderclap. We reached over 1.2 million people, asking them to stand with Emily in the fight to recall Judge Persky.

But we still have work to do. Judge Persky's current term doesn't end until 2022. We can't let him continue to make dangerous decisions regarding women's health and safety. In April, we can begin collecting over 80,000 signatures of registered Santa Clara County voters to trigger a recall election on November 7, 2017. Recall elections in California are complicated and expensive.

Stand with Emily to say: enough is enough! Please chip in now to ensure we have the resources needed to recall Judge Persky. Every donation makes a difference and moves us closer towards our goal.

Thank you,
Michele Dauber
Chair, Committee to Recall Judge Persky

November 1, 2016

Emily Doe is Glamour Woman of the Year

Emily Doe was named Glamour Woman of the Year today (as she remains anonymous, Michele Dauber, the Committee Chair of Recall Judge Persky, will be accepting the award on her behalf on November 14th).

Emily Doe also provided an incredible, exclusive essay to Glamour.

Here's an excerpt:

If you think the answer is that women need to be more sober, more civil, more upright, that girls must be better at exercising fear, must wear more layers with eyes open wider, we will go nowhere. When Judge Aaron Persky mutes the word justice, when Brock Turner serves one month for every felony, we go nowhere. When we all make it a priority to avoid harming or violating another human being, and when we hold accountable those who do, when the campaign to recall this judge declares that survivors deserve better, then we are going somewhere.

We've also just released a new video today. We hope you'll get a chance to both read the essay and watch the video.

Please chip in today and share this page with your networks!

Thank you all so much for your continued support.

September 26, 2016

Our first video


We are continuing our momentum.

Last week, the Feminist Majority hosted a very successful fundraiser where we raised $80,000 to help the Recall Campaign.

We also debuted our very first video!

Donors were very impressed and one donor put up a $5,000 challenge. If we can raise $15,000 by the end of September, she will donate $5,000 to bring the fundraiser’s event total to $100,000.

Make your biggest impact yet by chipping in whatever you can right now. If we meet our $15,000 goal by Friday, your donation will help us meet our $100,000 goal!

Organizations like the Feminist Majority support the recall of Judge Aaron Persky because they know we need judges who understand sexual assault and violence against women -- and take it seriously.

That's why over 75 donors from Silicon Valley packed the University Club to hear about the campaign, along with a moderated conversation with Feminist Majority Executive Director Kathy Spillar and Amy Ziering, producer of the acclaimed documentaries the Hunting Ground and the Invisible War.

Everyone came away believing how important this campaign is as a way of participating in the movement to obtain better treatment for victims of sexual and domestic violence in the court system.

As Kathy Spillar told the audience, the Feminist Majority has been arguing that "Rape is Rape" for decades. It's time to see that reflected in our judicial system.

We hope this video will help inform voters of the dangerous decisions Judge Persky has made during his tenure as Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge. Enough is enough. We must recall Judge Persky.

We need your help to promote this video far and wide on Facebook and Twitter. Contribute now to help us respond to our donor's generous challenge and meet our $100,000 goal by the end of the month.

Thank you,
Michele Dauber

Chair, Committee to Recall Judge Persky

September 14, 2016

Stanford alum and father of sexual assault survivor joins efforts to recall Judge Persky

Joe McCarthy, a Stanford alumni, donated on behalf of his daughter, a sexual assault survivor in order to help call attention to the serious problem of sexual assault on the Stanford campus and elsewhere. He states:

"Brock Turner’s actions were inexcusable. Yet he insists on hiding behind excuses rather than accepting responsibility for his actions. His assault, victim blaming, and lack of personal accountability were all wrong. But he’s part of a larger issue.

Judge Persky is certainly mistaken in his view that privileged individuals (e.g. fellow Stanford athletes) should not be held fully accountable for their acts. While I believe that judges should have leeway in their decisions, I also believe there should be consequences for misuse of that power. A recall is the most appropriate consequence. The lenient sentence, and his attempts to justify it, was wrong. But he’s part of a larger issue.

This case itself was the symptom of a larger and systemic problem that exists at Stanford, at other campuses, and throughout society. I sincerely hope that my alma mater addresses head-on the attitude of sexual assault rather than being misled into treating it as an alcohol consumption issue. Athletes, fraternity members, and all students must understand what consent is and is not. Right now, Stanford is part of the larger issue.

Whether privileged or not, drunk or sober, we need to understand: Only an informed and enthusiastic “yes” is consent. Fear, inebriation, or unconsciousness are not. Sexual assault should be punished, with no excuses and no leniency, so that the consequences associated with it pave the way to justice for survivors and would-be perpetrators are put on notice.

If we make excuses like Brock, if we accept lenient sentences like Judge Persky’s, if we don’t hold people accountable for their actions, if we don’t discard the idea that sexual assault and rape are the survivor’s fault or alcohol’s fault or simply a by-product of modern society, if we don’t follow the example of the Swedish grad students and intervene, if we don’t teach our sons about consent and respect, if we don’t speak out loud and clear against sexual assault... then we, too, are part of the larger issue.

We owe it to the survivor in this case and survivors everywhere: We must step up and be part of the larger solution.”

Please continue to share our campaign with your friends, families, and networks. We must all choose to be a part of the larger solution.

September 2, 2016

Rally to Recall Judge Persky Today!!!

Today - San Jose Hall of Justice 190 West Hedding Street, San Jose, CA


#BrockTurner is set to be released from county jail on September 2nd. He will have only served three months for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman. #JudgePersky allowed this to happen, and he must be held responsible. Join us in rallying to #RecallPersky.

Speakers Include:
- Committee to Recall Judge Persky Chair Michele Dauber
- Kamilah Willingham, Sexual Assault Survivor, Harvard Law School
- Sofie Karasek, Sexual Assault Survivor, UC Berkeley
- Sen. Pro Tem Kevin De Leon (CA Senate District 24)
- Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA 15th District)
- Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-CA 9th District)
- Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA 46th District)
- Sen. Jim Beall (CA Senate District 15)
- Stephanie Pham, Associate of Students for Sexual Assault Prevention, Stanford University
- Assemblymember Nora Campos (Assembly District 27)
- Palo Alto Mayor Patrick Burt
- Congressional Candidate Ro Khanna (CA 17th District)
- Former Milpitas Mayor Bob Livengood

- CA NOW President Jerilyn Stapleton

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