Santa Monica, CA -- Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School Board Member Ben Allen has earned the endorsement of former U.S. Congresswoman and Los Angeles County Supervisor YvonneBurke, who has served the region for over 40 years, in his bid to represent California's 26th State Senate District.
“Because I care deeply about the community that I have represented for over 40 years, I want the most qualified individual to represent this community in the State Senate – that candidate is Ben Allen. Ben’s local roots and extensive experience working in California’s public education system qualify him to represent our diverse Senate District. I look forward to seeing Ben champion civil rights and improve the access to quality public education for all Californians as our next State Senator. I am ready to pass on the torch to him,” said former Congresswoman Yvonne Burke.
“I am so honored to receive the endorsement of former Congresswoman and County Supervisor Yvonne Burke. For more than four decades, she has been a trailblazer for female empowerment and has set multiple precedents in the realm of public service, which I deeply admire. It is an honor to know that I have the chance to represent the same community that she has represented, and I look forward to continuing her legacies, while also establishing my own,” said Ben Allen.
Congresswoman Yvonne Burke began her path in public service in the California State Assembly, representing Los Angeles’ 63rd Assembly District from 1966 to 1972, during which time she made legislative efforts to address juvenile issues and limit garnishment of wages. In 1972, Burke served as Vice-Chairperson of the Democratic National Convention -- the first African-American to hold that office. The following year, Burke became the first African-American woman to serve in U.S. Congress on the West Coast, representing the District through 1978. While in Congress, Burke was on the House Select Committee on Assassinations and the House Committee on Appropriations, where she fought for increased funding to aid local jurisdictions to comply with desegregation mandates. Shortly after leaving Congress, Burke served on the Board of Regents of the University of California, until she was appointed to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, where she became the first female and first African-American in that office. In 1992, Burke ran, and was elected to, another term on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisor, where she served until her retirement in 2008, during which she held the position of Chair of the Board three times. She currently serves on the AMTRAK Board of Directors President Obama's appointment in 2012 and the California Transportation Commission after Governor Jerry Brown's appointment in 2013. Burke remains a legacy and inspiration to activists and public servants today.
With her endorsement, Burke joins a growing list of well-respected local elected officials and organizations, who are backing Allen, the only candidate who grew up in the District and who has represented Californians as a public servant at the state and local levels. He has earned the endorsements of some of the region's most popular and respected leaders, including U.S. Representatives Henry Waxman and Grace Napolitano; former U.S. Representatives Anthony Beilenson, Howard Berman, and Mel Levine; Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky and former Los Angeles County Supervisor Ed Edelman; State Senators Fran Pavley, Dr. Ed Hernandez, and Jerry Hill; former State Senators Tom Hayden and Alan Sieroty; Assemblymembers Richard Bloom, Steven Bradford, Isadore Hall, III, and Adrin Nazarian; former Assemblymembers Terry Friedman, Warren Furutani, Richard Katz, Tony Mendoza, and George Nakano; Los Angeles City Councilmembers Paul Koretz, Paul Krekorian, and Tom Labonge; and the environmental organizations Sierra Club and League of Conservation Voters. For the full list of Ben Allen's endorsements, please click here.
Ben Allen placed first among a crowded field in the open primary for the 26th State Senate District, held on June 3, 2014.
The 26th State Senate District consists of the cities of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, Palos Verdes Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, El Segundo, Avalon, Lomita, Torrance, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, and Beverly Hills; the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Marina Del Rey, Playa Del Rey, Westchester, Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, Westwood, Westwood Village, Bel Air, Holmby Hills, Little Holmby, Sunset Hills, Beverly Grove, Mar Vista, Mid City West, Miracle Mile, Larchmont Village, Hollywood, Hollywood Hills, Fairfax, Carthay, Fremont Place, Hancock Park, and Windsor Square; and the unincorporated Los Angeles County communities of Marina Del Rey, San Clemente Island, Santa Catalina Island, Franklin, Centinela, and Ocean View.