Mary Adams

A Lifetime of Public Service and Making a Difference

As our County Supervisor, Mary Adams is getting it done on the issues that matter to us. Her service as our Supervisor is just the latest chapter in a life and career dedicated to public service and helping others.

30 Years Leading Non-Profits that Helped Thousands of People

Prior to serving in government, Mary spent three decades running leading non-profits that made a difference in the lives of thousands of local people.

During her 14 years as the CEO of United Way Monterey County, Mary raised more than $50 million to help homeless children, provide meals for seniors, make healthcare more accessible, prevent gang violence, keep families in their homes during the recession, and expand opportunity for working people. An estimated 1 in 3 local residents benefited from a United Way-funded agency or program that Mary led.

Mary was humbled to be recognized for this work with Woman of the Year Awards from the Monterey County Board of Supervisors’ Commission on the Status of Women and CSU Monterey Bay School of Business.

Prior to leading United Way Monterey County, Mary held senior leadership positions at the American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association, where she took on Big Tobacco, helped save hundreds of millions in funding for public health programs, and reduced tobacco-related illness and death in California. When revenue for these health programs was later threatened, Mary was brought back to save the funding, and received the American Heart Association’s Time, Feeling, Focus Award for her work.

A Supervisor on Our Side

Mary retired as CEO of United Way Monterey County in 2015. The following year, when the community called for new, responsive, more effective leadership on the Monterey County Board of Supervisors, Mary felt called to serve again.

She ran a grassroots effort in what many local observers deemed an uphill campaign, and she won. In January of 2017, Mary was sworn in as the Monterey County Supervisor for District 5, which includes the cities of Carmel-By-the-Sea, Monterey, Pacific Grove, and the unincorporated communities of Carmel Highlands, Big Sur, Highway 1 to San Luis Obispo County, Pebble Beach, Carmel Valley, and the Highway 68 corridor.

She served as Board President for her first year in office.

Focusing on the Critical Issues We Care About and Getting Results

In her first term as our County Supervisor, Mary Adams has gotten the job done on the issues that matter to us: Improving transportation, reducing traffic, increasing access to affordable housing, advocating for safe, affordable drinking water, bringing clean energy to County residents, keeping local communities moving after recent destructive storms, prioritizing public safety, and making government more accountable. And she’s just getting started.