Jonathan was born in Los Angeles and his family moved to the Bay Area in 1992. He graduated from Santa Clara University with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and has lived in Santa Clara County since 2001, and became a resident of San José in 2007.
Jonathan was employed by a local south bay engineering government contractor prior to his college graduation as a mass properties engineer. He quickly rose through the ranks, obtained Department of Defense security clearances, and was promoted to the role of Lead Physical Architect, one of the youngest people to do that in the company. He was responsible for all vehicle integration across five specific configurations of a $12 million per unit vehicle while maintaining commonality and of over 180 subsystems and installations across eight completely different vehicles. Jonathan maintained positive working relationships with over 15 major companies, including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Raytheon, and more to integrate over 5000 parts using a product structure he personally simplified for maximum efficiency.
He selected, trained, and managed a team of designers and engineers from multiple companies located around the United States and ensured projects stayed on time and within budgets while he met the 8,000+ requirements required of the vehicle.
Jonathan was highly praised by the United States Army Major General Cartwright for design ingenuity, safety, and innovation. He was deemed “Hero of the Program.” He received his company Chairman’s Award nomination for the concept and design of his IED Mine Blast Mitigation Seat (protected against fatal brain injuries).
Additionally US Senator Mark Udall recognized him on May 27, 2013 for “Saving American Lives in Combat” through his design innovations and a flag was flown over the United States Capitol Building in Washington DC that Memorial Day for his achievements.
“Remember, the injuries are your challenge - some people are just too strong! Others have not to face the obstacles you take on because they just can’t cope!” These were words of wisdom bestowed upon Jonathan by his high school art teacher, Brett Klement, after a wrestling season that ended short due to injuries. LIttle did they know these words would have a much more meaningful purpose in the years to come.
Jonathan has worked his way through adversity when he was the victim of a catastrophic car accident that forever changed his life. Ten years ago while traffic was at a complete stop on 880 freeway, he was rear ended by an 18 year old driver who was traveling at least 85 mph and never hit the brakes.
The accident immediately transformed Jonathan from a young, healthy engineer into a disabled person who needed help for everyday tasks and was told that he would never walk again without a wheelchair or a walker. His rehab has included 23 surgeries and procedures, daily physical therapy, and immersion into warm water pools where teams of trainers physically moved his limbs when he could not.
After some time and intense medical treatment, he was able to go on short walks for physical therapy. On one of these walks his next door neighbor informed him about a project that threatened the safety of their neighborhood and that most of his neighbors were unaware of. Jonathan researched and agreed the project did not belong in a residential neighborhood. Jonathan started collecting signatures from his neighbors to oppose the project and the next chapter in his life began.
While he was collecting signatures near a children’s park, Jonathan came across a child who cut his leg on a syringe, who was crying and whose mother could not afford an ambulance to take the child to the ER. He asked himself, “What kind of City do we live in that allows children to be exposed to dangerous items like weapons and biohazards?” At that moment he decided to focus his life on improving our City and making sure that his neighbors needs are always placed first.
Jonathan’s years of rehabilitation enable him to see things for how they can be. He started the Senter Monterey Neighborhood Association. The results were immediate! By working with our Police Department and City Department leads, Jonathan led efforts to clean all of his nearby neighborhood parks including Coyote Creek. He worked to get a fence approved at a local hot spot for narcotics and human trafficking, which has significantly improved the quality of life of our neighbors there by blocking access to the creek which reduced the amount of burglaries, vehicle thefts, and other illegal activity for that neighborhood.
When the City told the children of Spartan Little League that they had to play in disgusting conditions riddled with human feces, used syringes, and mentally ill persons threatening staff and exposing their genitals to little kids, Jonathan again stepped in. He was placed in charge of the Sociology Capstone class project at San José State University and his students engaged in cleaning the area of any and all contaminants they found. Jonathan then worked with the Mayor’s Office, the Council Offices, and the City Parks and Housing Departments to implement a plan to ensure those fields remain clean and safe for our children.
Jonathan started a District Leadership Group in the most ethnically diverse area of San José because he believes that every one of us should be treated equally, be listened to, and have equal representation regardless of our differences. Jonathan’s personal beliefs include the fundamental right that every person is equal, regardless of gender, skin color, country of origin, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability and more.
Our diversity blesses us with insight and culture, from which we are able to develop solutions to tackle the numerous problems we face. Jonathan will find a way to move past the national rhetoric and unite our Community to put aside differences and stand as one demanding the needs of our District 2 residents.
As Jonathan’s civic engagement grew he looked for new ways to serve. His wife suggested he apply for the Neighborhoods Commission which is chartered by San José’s Mayor and City Council to make recommendations on City Budget, Public Safety, Transportation and Neighborhood Services.
After his appointment to the Commission his impact was immediately felt. He made focusing on finding ways to solve the homeless epidemic the number one issue of the Commission in 2017-18.
The next year he was elected Vice Chair of the Neighborhoods Commission because of his leadership abilities and track record of getting results.
Jonathan’s journey thus far would not be complete without the most important part mentioned: his family. While disabled and when life hit him the hardest, it was his family that gave him the support to get up and move forward. His parents and siblings were always there for him. He could not be defeated because he never quit trying. The love of his life stayed beside him through thick and thin. Her love and steadfastness empowered Jonathan and the two were married in 2014 at St. Ignatius Church in San Francisco. They have a beautiful two year old daughter named Heidi!
Jonathan has a big heart and is always looking for ways to help his neighbors as he demonstrated when he housed and lived with four homeless persons under his own roof, for free.
One person was living on the street near his home. He would routinely stop by and help Jonathan with outdoor chores. One day Jonathan said why don’t you stay with me awhile until you get things together again.
The second was a friend's brother who was looking for a fresh start. The man was very helpful and was a great friend to Jonathan. Unfortunately, he was overcome by methamphetamine and Jonathan had to part ways with him.
The third person was a neighbor's child who Jonathan took in and cared for after the boy's father was arrested and sent to jail. This kid's mom was out of the picture and his father had a long rap sheet of legal problems. Jonathan remembers the look on the kid's face when the ground rules were established of brushing teeth, taking showers, and making your own bed.
The last homeless person Jonathan housed in his own home was a Vietnam Veteran who had no other place to go after a tough divorce left him with nothing and his company fired him for being too old. They lived together for almost two years. The man was able to get his life back on track and they are still friends to this day.
Jonathan doesn’t just talk and do nothing. He actually backs it up with action and experience.
Jonathan is tough on crime because he has lived through some terrible situations and has seen firsthand how it destroys lives, families and communities. While his daughter was just an infant, there was a shooting at the home next door where two men were shot and a pregnant woman was severely beaten. He has called 911 for trespassers in his back yard, prostitutes engaging in sex acts in front of his house and his wife saw a man defecate on their street. A quadruple homicide occurred a block and a half away from their old home. Jonathan will work to ensure that we are safe because no one should experience events like these.
Jonathan has a history of leadership and experience organizing people and all available resources to obtain the best results. He listens to everyone and understands the importance of seeing a problem from multiple perspectives, to develop the workable fiscally responsible solutions.
He will always do what is right for our residents and small businesses ensuring San José and District 2 have the leadership and voice we need to make our homes and neighborhoods safe for generations to come.
Vote Fleming for District 2!