LOS ANGELES, CA – California Charter Schools Association President and CEO Myrna Castrejón issued the following statement today regarding the passing of former Los Angeles Mayor and philanthropist Richard Riordan:
"The California Charter Schools Association joins the City of Angels in mourning the passing of former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan.
"'Tough enough to turn LA around' was Richard Riordan’s 1993 slogan when he first ran for Los Angeles Mayor, and one that he lived-up to in his two terms taking-on the economic challenges and uniting a fractured city following the 1992 riots. He was not afraid to shake things up at City Hall and his victory was appropriately headlined 'A POLITICAL EARTHQUAKE IN L.A.?' by the Washington Post.
"Mayor Riordan understood that moving Los Angeles forward required attention to the success of public schools from every vantage point and engaged from City Hall to push schools to respond more quickly and effectively to improve student outcomes with urgency and purpose. He helped elect reform-focused candidates to the Los Angeles Unified School Board, which led the way for increased public education opportunities for families, including charter public schools, giving them more options for their kids.
"Mayor Riordan helped put charter public schools on the path to success and as a result, millions of students, not only in Los Angeles but across California have benefited from a high-quality education because of his vision and leadership.
"He also lived his civic responsibility through his philanthropic work contributing millions of dollars of his personal wealth to causes that helped disadvantaged children. He launched the Riordan Foundation in 1981, with the mission to help children become proficient in reading and writing by the end of second grade. The majority of the Foundation resources have funded computer-assisted literacy programs for kindergarten through fifth grade. His legacy will live through the countless kids he helped through his public service work and philanthropy.
"On behalf of our Board of Directors and the entire charter community, we extend our sincere condolences to his wife, Elizabeth, his children, and grandchildren."
About the California Charter Schools Association
The vision of the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) is to build great public schools of joy and rigor that prepare all California students for success in college, career, community, and life. The mission of CCSA is to meet parent, educator, and community need for great public school options by supporting and advocating for high quality non-profit charter schools and sharing their success throughout California’s public schools. Learn more.