We’re excited to announce the release of Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan’s memoir, “The Mayor.” With his touching life story, former Los Angeles Mayor Richard J. Riordan offers his unique insights on how he turned around L.A. — and how the country can realize better times.
Richard J. Riordan was one of the few Republicans to be elected mayor of Los Angeles in modern history. At the core of his success as a politician, philanthropist, and businessman has always been empowering people and getting things done with cleareyed, compassionate pragmatism. During his time in office, between 1993 and 2001, he worked closely with President Bill Clinton and constantly tapped the best and brightest to rebuild the city he loved, including basketball star Earvin “Magic” Johnson, billionaire and world-famous arts patron Eli Broad, legendary architect Frank Gehry, and many others.
A non-ideological Republican who was pro-choice, pro-gay rights, and pro-immigration, Riordan was elected to office in the aftermath of the infamous Rodney King beating and subsequent 1992 L.A. Riots, which caused nearly $1 billion in property damage and took the lives of over 50 people. With ineffectual political leadership at City Hall, racial tensions were running high, the economy was in the tank, and the city’s crime and homicide rates grew out of control during the crack cocaine epidemic. And only a few months into Riordan’s young mayoralty, L.A. appeared to be most definitely doomed after the devastating 1994 Northridge earthquake rocked the city to its core.
In this book, he shares how he brilliantly turned around one of the world’s most famous cities after it faced near disaster.
“But the next several years of rebuilding and reforming Los Angeles would be arduous work, and I had to continually earn the public’s trust. If my parents had told me when I was a child that I would be leading one of the world’s capital cities through these very trying times, I would have thought they were crazy. I had only wanted to play baseball for the New York Yankees.” – Excerpt from “The Mayor”
Riordan’s memoir delves into his successes and difficulties during his time as mayor, the ideas and value system that drove his work—such as his deep spiritual beliefs that everyone is equal and deserves the opportunity to succeed—and the life events that shaped him. From the deaths of his two, young children to the passing of his mother on the eve of his first mayoral election, Riordan’s courage and compassion in the face personal heartbreak illustrates why he is so beloved and continues to be a major force in the political and civic worlds of L.A.