The official date of passing the baton to Los Angeles’ first woman mayor and the first woman of color is December 12th. The road to this hallowed office had many twists and turns. She defeated billionaire developer Rick Caruso who spent $100 million of his own money on his bid to be mayor. Despite his 10-to-1 spending advantage over Karen Bass the voice of the people was heard loud and clear and ultimately prevailed. During her first press conference as mayor-elect at the Ebell Women’s Club, she made it clear that no matter whether you voted for her or not, she would be the mayor for all the people. It is her desire to unite the people of Los Angeles and work on eradicating the homeless issue, making housing more affordable, lowering the crime rate, raising the quality of life for all Angelenos, and ending racism and corruption at city hall.
I have had the honor of knowing and working with the honorable Karen Bass for over two decades. What I know about her is, she is even-tempered, emotionally intelligent, highly ethical, and a woman of her word. Madam Mayor’s civic experience and political expertise were forged from being a community activist and a fighter against crime and poverty in South Los Angles. She is one of the co-founders of Community Coalition, a former California State Assemblymember, a member of Congress, and was on President Joe Biden’s shortlist of vice-presidential candidates. Her background as a physician assistant helps her better understand the importance of providing quality health care to all citizens. When I had the privilege and the pleasure to work with Karen Bass at Community Coalition she was always hands-on and had an open-door policy whenever I and others needed to speak with her. I believe as the mayor she will continue with the same accessibility and availability. It will be necessary for citizens of all races, creeds, and colors to support her and her staff to ensure the changes and progress that is needed happens. Even for those who do not live inside the city limits of Los Angeles, we can still stand with her because success in Los Angeles can have a positive overflow into other cities throughout Southern California and possibly the nation.
I believe her leadership will continue to open doors for women in various positions. Although she is not the first African American female mayor of a major city in our country, the number is still low. Other African American women mayors include Kim Janey of Boston, Muriel Bowser of Washington, D.C., LaToya Cantrell of New Orleans, Keisha Lance Bottoms of Atlanta, Vi Lyles of Charlotte North Carolina, London Breed of San Francisco, Lori Lightfoot of Chicago, and Tishaura Jones of St. Louis to name a few, but Karen Bass is our local sheroe.
I pray for God’s richest blessings on everything she puts her hands on and her administration. Something was once said, no matter what office or title any of us has the privilege to obtain, it is ultimately what we do with that power that defines who we are and what our legacy will be. Time will show us what our first female mayor’s legacy will be, but I am very optimistic that it will be impactful. #BassforMayor #WomenEmpowerment
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Visit www.WendyGladney.com and www.forgivingforliving.org to learn more. Wendy is a life strategist, coach, consultant, author, and speaker.