City: Gardena
Position Seeking: Mayor

Question 1: Please share a meaningful experience you had with art (visual, dance, drama, music, media arts) while growing up and its impact on you.

I have taken ballet lessons since the age of 6. I continue to take adult ballet today. My children are musicians- playing the violin, viola, piano and trumpet. The arts have played a tremendous role in the academic, social, psychological and emotional development of my children. My trumpet player started playing in elementary school so art and music programs in school are critical to the overall development of children.

Question 2: What do you believe the role of City Council should be in developing and supporting the region’s arts and cultural infrastructure?

Supporting the arts as part of a comprehensive city plan is critical. Arts education, and art and music programs contribute to a well rounded, socially and emotionally healthy population. Arts funding should always be a part of the city budget, whether it is a stand alone line item or a part of the parks and recreation programs. City officials should support and attend programs within the city, and also encourage participation in regional programs and events.

Question 3: What’s your vision for the city? What role, if any, does art and culture play in advancing that vision?

We are an “arts friendly” city. We sponsor a city wide dance instruction program with regular recitals. Our recreation department features art lessons.Our dance program features ballet, tap, jazz and cultural dance instruction. We also support and sponsor the Gardena Jazz Festival which is an annual event attended by hundreds of people each year. What we do need is a more comprehensive arts focus – more instrumental music lessons and events featuring different art mediums.

Questions 4: A recent report by the Otis College of Design found that 1 in every 6 jobs in LA County supports the creative sector and economy in Los Angeles County. If elected, how will you aim to ensure the continued vitality and growth of the creative economy and the artistic community that it supports?

As Mayor, I will continue to advocate for arts programs and events within our city. I will create programs that encourage arts participation, creative sector businesses and job creation. I will dedicate funding for arts programs as our city’s budget will dictate, and look for sponsorship of creative sector events from local businesses and corporations. I am looking for our arts focus to grow within our city, hopefully expanding to the dramatic arts, film and cinema productions. As Mayor, I will facilitate the processes that will allow this expansion to occur. This will boost our local economy and grow the artistic community as well.