Leadership is not new to Councilman Herb Wesson; previously, he led the State Assembly and this move will become natural for him.
The skills that Councilman Herb Wesson exhibited as an assemblyman was a prelude to his ascension as Speaker of the State Assembly. And the skills he exemplified as Speaker of the Assembly has prepared him to lead the Los Angeles City Council.
In January 2012, Wesson will assume the leadership of the city council becoming the president of the Los Angeles City Council. Those who know the veteran councilman believe that he will perform twice as many functions on behalf of his constituencies as he does at present.
On the City Council, Wesson Chairs the Rules and Elections Committee, which has jurisdiction over the City Ethics Commission, the Elections Division of the City Clerk, and the Ballot Simplification Committee. This committee also has jurisdiction over Council rules and policies, scheduling ballot measures and other city election and campaign practices, and the U.S. Census and redistricting.
Looking forward to this new challenge, Wesson said, “Growing up in Cleveland (Ohio), I never thought I’d be elected to the California State Assembly, and then become Speaker of the Assembly.” He then went on, “And to be elected to the L.A. City Council and now, to assume the presidency (of the city council)–my only regret is that my mother is not alive to see this.”
(Wesson’s mother, Gladys Wesson, passed away on June 29 at the age of 80).
In addition, he is also a member of the Housing, Community and Economic Development Committee, the Arts, Parks and Neighborhoods Committee, the Intergovernmental Relations Committee. Wesson is a strong advocate for mass transit, and is a member of the Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority, which oversees the construction of the Expo Line. The Expo Line, which has generated over 16,000 construction and design jobs, and is due to open for operation in early 2012.
When Wesson was Speaker, Danny J. Bakewell, Sr. described him in the following way: “He demonstrates his power and influence in a manner that best reflect his love and compassion for those whom he represents.” And as president of the city council, it is almost a certainty, Wesson will continue to demonstrate his power and influence to reflect his love and compassion for those whom he represents.
In the 10th Council District, the Councilman has been very aggressive in bringing new business development to the community, creating jobs and stimulating the local economy. Projects such as the $150 million “Midtown Crossing” retail development at Pico and San Vicente Boulevards, and the planned $93 million “District Square” retail project has been important priorities.
Together, these two projects will create thousands of construction and permanent retail jobs.
Wesson carries on an honorable tradition of African American city councilmen beginning with the late Mayor Tom Bradley–who served as the 10 th District Council, before becoming mayor–and passed the torch to Dave Cunningham, Nate Holden Martin Ludlow, and now Wesson is continuing that tradition.