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2020 US Senate Candidates

Non-presidential candidates may choose to take one of three paths to get on the June 30 non-presidential primary ballot. They may qualify through petition, the caucus/assembly process or hedge their bets and attempt to do both. Candidates who choose petition-only will not be voted on in caucus. Each candidate's chosen path to the primary ballot is listed below.


Dr. Diana Bray

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Petition

Raised in Maryland, Diana was always committed to the ongoing fight for justice. Her father and her mother fostered her passion for civic engagement by introducing her to civil rights marches, bringing her to JFK’s funeral, and encouraging her to campaign for Hubert Humphrey. The turbulence of the time and her family’s deep Jewish roots taught her the resilience that has characterized her work ever since.

Diana graduated from Middlebury College in Vermont, receiving her BA in English Literature and Psychology in 1982. Her interest in mental health was groundbreaking for the time, leading her to a new kind of program and post-graduate degree at the University of Denver.

During her doctoral program in Clinical Psychology at DU, Diana worked in the Cherry Creek School System, the Veterans Association, Fitzsimmons Army Hospital and Denver Health and wrote her dissertation on loss and trauma. She completed her Clinical Internship at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Washington D.C. and received her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology in 1988. Diana worked at The American University in Washington D.C. for nine years and during that time, she met her future husband, Leigh, while on a trip to Heron Island, a National Park along the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Together, they have a son, Sam, and three daughters, Eva, Tess and Emma.

While raising her family, Diana stayed invested in the political process, always remaining committed to building a better world for her children. Through her work, she came to understand the destructive influence of the oil & gas industry. Learning that Liquified Natural Gas Plants were about to be built on the pristine island just off the Queensland coast where Leigh was from, Diana began investigating the health and environmental effects of extraction in Australia and in Colorado, and she was appalled by what she found. Not only was the industry suppressing the known health risks, buying off our elected officials, and discrediting the clear evidence of climate change, but they were actively driving a wedge between working people and their environment.

Despite discouraging roadblocks, Diana persisted in her advocacy. “When we began protesting in 2006, we would maybe have five or six people joining us. It felt like shouting into the wind.” However, the tide has begun to turn, and she is heartened by the current surge of interest and activism around climate change. “Safer setbacks may not have passed last year, but we received over a million votes, and we’re still fighting for health and safety,” she says. “More importantly, we’re seeing new generations give this issue the attention it needs. In a fight between industry executives and elementary school children, I know which side I’m choosing.”

Diana’s run for the US Senate is about more than just demanding that industry respect the health of our planet and communities. “It’s about changing the way we think about the environment, and how we all benefit from protecting it. Industry is holding people’s jobs and livelihoods hostage, and this has to end. The transition to renewable energy needs to be led by working people in order to be truly just and effective.”

We invite you to learn more about Diana’s visionary platform and bold plans to protect our state, our country and our planet. In the coming months, Diana will be traveling Colorado to speak with the people she seeks to serve. Come meet her, and learn what is possible within a Climate of Justice.


Lorena Garcia

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Petition

Lorena Garcia has been supporting vulnerable communities throughout Colorado for more than a decade, by developing and executing meaningful and effective life-changing programs and policies. Dedicated to serving nonprofit organizations her entire career, Garcia works tirelessly to build up the dignity of marginalized and disenfranchised communities by working with these communities to create and implement programs rooted in dignity and respect, and that drive confidence and success. Touching the lives of people both in Colorado and around the globe, Garcia also supported communities in Nepal and Nicaragua, helping them create self-sufficient, circular economies that allow them to thrive in their isolated areas. The services Garcia brought to these communities included education, economic, and health and nutritional programming. 

As a candidate for U.S. Senate, Garcia believes that it is time for a new voice in the U.S. Senate. We are at a crossroads in our history where we can no longer accept the status quo but must take courageous action to fix our broken government systems. Garcia is running because she believes the path to change must begin with innovative leaders who will work as tirelessly as she has for the interests of every Coloradan, not for political aspiration or special interest. She is dedicated to creating a country where thriving means every individual has access to economic opportunity, no matter where one lives, family origins, gender, race, physical ability, or sexual orientation.

Garcia speaking at a working families rally on the importance of the Family Care Act, 2013 

As the Executive Director of the Colorado Statewide Parent Coalition, Garcia stands behind her belief that we can have a strong educational system that begins with early childhood education for all, to help prepare our next generations to successfully face the challenges we leave for them. It must start with leaders who value all people and invests in their education and health. These two commitments alone will ensure that economic status is no longer predicated on access to healthcare or higher education. 

Garcia operates on a belief that we can pass laws that protect the planet while also maintaining the dignity and economic impact for those who work in the oil and gas industry at the same time.

As a veteran organizer, women’s rights activist and nonprofit administrator who has worked in the interest of the public good throughout her career, Garcia has led important fights for family-sustaining economic policies, and civil rights protections to protect women’s reproductive independence, economic justice, and immigrant rights at the State Capitol and at the ballot box. 

As a 7th generation Coloradan on her father’s side and first generation on her mother’s side, Garcia’s family background mirrors many families in Colorado and across the country. Her commitment to the well-being of families can be tied back to her own as the youngest of six siblings and aunt of 16 nieces and nephews. She and her wife, Jaimi, have been married for seven years. Garcia has a Bachelor’s in film studies from CU Boulder and a MBA from the George Washington University.


Dave Goldfischer

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Petition

David Goldfischer is the only candidate running for U.S. Senate who has made Defending Our Democracy the centerpiece of his campaign. As a national security expert, Dave has been outspoken about the combined foreign threat posed by Putin’s Russia, and the domestic danger posed by Donald J. Trump.  He calls on progressives and moderates, liberals and principled conservatives, to unite in defense of history’s greatest miracle: our 233-year-old Republic based on free elections, the rule of law, and equal rights for all citizens.


Dave’s role during his 28 years as a DU professor has been to prepare students for successful careers in international security and foreign policy.  He understands the concerns of his students—many of whom are veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan—as they face an uncertain future.  And he imparts the skills, insights and confidence that enable them to address challenges—domestic and international--to America’s safety and prosperity.


Along his path toward becoming a professor, Dave did all sorts of work: factory and farm, construction and warehouse, driving a delivery truck and a forklift, and temp work in countless corporate offices.  One thing he learned from all those jobs is that every worker deserves a living wage, good health care, and affordable education.


Dave got his start in education teaching inner-city high school students in New York, Native American students in Alaska, and going on to teach—and learn from–students at universities throughout the United States and around the world. He believes that effective education is our best defense against the fears, lies, and divisions on which demagogues like Trump feed.


Dave has an entrepreneurial spirit. He was a pioneer in the field of homeland security education, working with the leadership of U.S. Northern Command and National Defense University to develop programs for addressing human caused and natural disasters, and helping to create the nationwide Homeland Security and Defense Education Consortium. He also ran a small Colorado business that provided disaster planning for Colorado, for Denver, and for some of our state’s small towns. And from 2010-2013, Dave created and led the United Arab Emirates’ Institute for International and Civil Security, a think-tank and graduate program addressing violent extremism and the broader challenges of the Middle East.


From his work on nuclear arms control as a Foreign Policy Fellow at the Brookings Institution, to recent contributions on subjects ranging from reforming our electoral system to health care, Dave proposes polices that depart from the partisanship that now dominates policy debates.


Dave is the only Senate candidate from Colorado with deep foreign policy expertise, which he has acquired through his experiences in government, academia, and the private sector.  He understands how to develop interlinked international and domestic policies to meet policy challenges from climate change to inclusive prosperity, from immigration to the security of our elections.  


Fmr. Gov. John Hickenlooper

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Petition + Caucus/Assembly

I’m running to give Colorado’s priorities and values a voice in Washington. Right now we’re represented by a senator who works to undo our progress by voting 99% of the time with Donald Trump and going along with Mitch McConnell’s obstruction and partisan political games.

John Hickenlooper didn’t take the usual path to public office. After working as a geologist, he became a brewer and small business owner whose successful pub was a part of the revitalization of a neglected warehouse district in Denver.

John’s independence was a hallmark of his record as mayor, where he brought people together to get things done. It was the same approach John took as governor, where he helped take the state from 40th in job creation to the top economy in the country.

John is running for Senate to make Washington work for Coloradans by bringing people together to lower health care and prescription drug costs, to keep our families safe from gun violence, and protect the state’s public lands while also combating climate change.

Fmr. State House Speaker Andrew Romanoff

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Caucus/Assembly 

Why I'm Running....


CATASTROPHIC rise in greenhouse gases. An administration consumed by chaos and scandal. An economy that leaves millions of us behind.

We’re running out of time to rescue our planet, repair our democracy, and restore the American Dream. That’s why I’m running for the U.S. Senate.

More than a million Coloradans struggle to afford medical care or a place to live. Carbon pollution kills millions of people around the globe and plunges even more into poverty. Drug addiction and gun violence claim the lives of more than 300 Americans each day. 

Meanwhile the president shuts down the government and demonizes anyone who disagrees with him. The free press, an independent judiciary, even the right to vote come under attack. 

It’s not just Donald Trump who’s at fault here. It’s the politicians—and the system—that enable these problems to persist. 

Polluters gut our environmental laws. Drug companies gouge consumers and stifle competition. The gun lobby crushes any measures that stand in its way.

That’s what happens when the Supreme Court turns corporations into people and money into speech. Special interests bankroll Congress and block reform.

We deserve better. 

We deserve leaders willing to defy the president—and even their own party—when their conscience demands it. Leaders who will put our lives first. 

I’ve spent the past four years fighting for mental health care, driven by a tragedy in my own family and by the pain I’ve felt in so many others. When I joined Mental Health Colorado, I told my team that I wanted the pace of our work to match the urgency of our mission.

There’s no such urgency in the U.S. Senate.

We’ve seen children caged, bigots emboldened, fundamental freedoms under fire. I’ll stand up to this administration—and any other—that violates our values.

I’ll lead the fight for Medicare for all; good jobs and the education and training they require; and a Green New Deal to replace fossil fuel with renewable energy.

I’ll fight for comprehensive immigration reform, including a path to citizenship. For me, this fight is personal; I wouldn’t be in America if our nation hadn’t opened its doors to my mother and all four of my grandparents.

If we’re serious about winning these fights, we need to change the way we finance campaigns. I’ll lead by example—just as I did a decade ago—by turning down contributions from political action committees.

My campaign, like my career, is grounded in the people of Colorado. I know firsthand what women and men of goodwill can achieve when united by a common purpose. 

That’s reason enough to fight anew.


Stephany Rose Spaulding

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Caucus/Assembly

In January 2017, when Stephany Rose Spaulding joined the Women’s March on Washington in DC, she was inspired by the sheer force of humanity gathered to repudiate the racism, misogyny and xenophobia of President Trump. At the time, she didn’t know where that inspiration would take her, but within weeks, guided by friends and colleagues who understood her lifelong commitment to fighting for those without a voice, she made the decision to run for the United States Congress.

Stephany’s first exposure to issues of inequality came at a young age. She was raised on Chicago’s South Side by public school teacher-parents who sometimes struggled to make ends meet. Guided by a deep faith, her parents personified sacrifice and hard work as they held down jobs, attended college and raised five children. Her parents’ love of education was passed on to Stephany, whose studies culminated in a Ph.D. in American Studies from Purdue University and the pursuit of a teaching career that would examine many of the issues she confronted as an African-American girl.


In 2010, Stephany joined the faculty of the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs where she would succeed as a scholar and eventually rise to chair the Women’s and Ethnic Studies program. But in her early months, she was candidly told that African-Americans often struggled to thrive in the community and many opted not to stay for long. The city had a reputation as a bastion of conservative values and its leaders were predominantly white men. As a diversity and inclusion expert, the irony of the situation was not lost on Stephany, who decided to stop waiting for the community to come to her, and instead, began building bridges to people outside her personal and professional circle. 

Stephany’s success in building a dynamic sense of community for herself and others can be seen in the faces of the parishioners attending the Ebenezer Baptist Church where she serves as senior pastor. People of different faiths, ethnic, economic and political backgrounds gather every Sunday to share their challenges and hopes for the future. 

Her experience and passion for uniting people despite their differences makes Stephany uniquely qualified to represent Colorado in the U.S. Senate for ALL Coloradans. She is excited to transform Congress with those who, like her, believe that the surest way to bring greater equality, justice and opportunity to their communities is to take the lead.


Erik Underwood

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Petition + Caucus/Assembly

Former 2018 Colorado gubernatorial candidate. Erik Underwood comes from a single parent household. Erik being the oldest of 6 children had to help raise his younger siblings in poverty.


In high school and college, Erik was championship hurdler in track and field, which earned him track scholarships.


Erik attended Morehouse College and later graduated from Central State University, with a degree in International Relations.


Completed a Fellowship at Emory University’s Rollin School of Public Health – Trained in Infectious Disease and Pandemic Response Protocols.


Underwood is the only candidate who worked in the U.S. Senate as a staffer, learning to work across the aisle in a divided Senate. Erik is also a media technology entrepreneur and innovator, who founded My24HourNews.Com, Inc. and owns a personal assistant search engine called My24Erica.Com.


Erik has detailed plans to fully fund Free College and Trade School at no cost to tax payers. Has a Student Debt Elimination plan.


Will seek to fully fund the CDC pandemic response team and pandemic readiness protocols.


Supports people bail outs during COVID - 19, No to corporate bail outs.


Supports the idea for Medicare for all. Has a plan for a Health Care Public Option Bill that would charge a pennies per trade tax on Wall Street transactions.


Will fight climate change. Supports the Green New Deal.


In addition, Erik will seek to eliminate the permanent tax cuts to the wealthy in order to raise social security benefits for our seniors.




Michelle Ferrigno Warren

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Petition

"IT’S TIME for leadership that believes in unity, equity and will fight for opportunities for all of us."

Michelle Ferrigno Warren has committed her life to her community and advancing equity and democratic participation across the country. She is a nationally recognized leader, advocate, author. For over a decade, she has championed critical issues including immigration, mass incarceration and education. She is both a policy expert and knows how to build diverse coalitions that get things done.  

In her role as the Advocacy & Strategic Engagement Director for Christian Community Development Association (CCDA), Michelle has spoken to thousands, traveled the world and been interviewed by national and international media. In her role as a consultant with the D.C. based National Immigration Forum, she has worked to build consensus among diverse stakeholders. Her advocacy and coalition work is a national model for non-profits and exactly what Colorado needs in an elected official. 

Michelle was born in New York and came to Colorado when she was 15. Her commitment to the community around her began after college as a 7th grade math teacher working and living in a low income community in Dallas. Having grown up in a conservative home, she began to grow beyond her own experience, to listen and learn from those in her new community. She and her husband returned to Colorado 23 years ago and together started a home along East Colfax for homeless teenage girls and the following year launched Open Door Ministries, a community development 501c3 corporation in downtown Denver to address poverty, addiction and homelessness through social programs. 

Michelle began to see the limitations of social programs and started to walk into community organizing and politics at the local level to help join her neighbors in their struggle against systemic injustice. She went to the University of Colorado and earned her Master’s in Public Administration, moving her quickly toward state and national level policy work and coalition building.  Michelle has worked tirelessly to leverage her expertise to impact both her neighbors and others in similar communities across the country.

Michelle has lived in Denver’s 80219 neighborhood for over 20 years, leading & supporting civic endeavors and practicing what it means to be a good neighbor. Michelle has sat on numerous non-profit boards, community commissions and efforts. She is a fierce advocate for justice and has shared much of her journey toward civic engagement and activism in her book, The Power of Proximity, Moving Beyond Awareness to Action. She is an adjunct faculty member at Denver Seminary teaching, “Political Advocacy, Doing Justice in the Public Square.” Michelle has been married to her college sweetheart David for 26 years and they have three grown children.


Trish Zornio

2020 Candidate for US Senate
Chosen Path to June 30 Primary Ballot: Caucus/Assembly

A 33-year-old Colorado scientist, Trish has worked for over 15 years in some of the nations’ top hospitals, clinics, and universities. Having dedicated her career to helping others and working with national experts to solve complex problems, Trish is ready to hit the ground running as your next U.S. Senator.

Given her scientific expertise and forward thinking, Trish is deeply concerned by the lack of scientific representation in Congress. With no scientists on the U.S. Senate science committee, and many of our nation’s biggest challenges requiring expertise in science and technology, Trish is running to bring a fresh voice to Washington. And it’s more than just science. In the last decade, Trish has watched as the middle class — herself included — continues to shrink while the richest Americans become richer and richer. From her own experiences, Trish knows the financial hardships of her generation, like crippling student debt, stagnant wages, and rising housing costs. With science on her side, Trish wants to work to bring equal opportunities to all.

A decade-long Coloradan, Trish was born in the rural mountains of Northern New Hampshire. Raised in a small town miles away from any urban center, much like many areas in Colorado, Trish grew up roaming the woods and rivers around a house her father built. A conservative, religious upbringing, and first generation American on her father’s side, Trish learned first hand the value of hard work and to never give up. Through difficult circumstances, she learned as a kid how to overcome challenges that many families face, like job loss, divorce, and mental health struggles. Eventually, and perhaps despite the odds, Trish went on to be the first in her family to receive an advanced college degree, eventually finding work at the Stanford University School of Medicine, and gained a deep appreciation for making it easier for others like her to find success

Today, Trish has visited every county (all 64!) and met with thousands of Coloradans. She has given dozens of talks on the role of science in policy and is actively working on a book. Trish continues her policy efforts at the local and state level, and mentors other scientists in the legislative process. Trish currently lives in Superior, Colorado and is a lecturer, researcher, and speaker who previously served as the Lead Coordinator for a Colorado STEM & Policy Research initiative, Advisor for the 500 Women Scientists Youth Pod in Boulder County, the Principal Director of CoMusica (a community music program she founded in 2013 in Boulder County), and as the Lead Coordinator for 314 Action Colorado Chapter, a nonprofit aimed at transitioning scientists into policy. Trish currently teaches behavioral neuroscience and research methodology at the University of Colorado Denver.

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