Do You Want New LB City Council/Harbor Commission Chambers In New City Hall Named "Bob Foster Civic Chambers?" Four Councilmembers Propose To Send Request (Letter Signed By 36 Individuals We Name) First To A Council Committee & Harbor Comm'n Before Council Decision is reader and advertiser supported. Support independent news in LB similar to the way people support NPR and PBS stations. We're not non-profit so it's not tax deductible but $49.95 (less than an annual dollar a week) helps keep us online.
(March 5, 2019, 3:05 p.m.) -- Do you want the new LB City Council/Harbor Commission Chambers in the new City Hall at the new Civic Center named the "Bob Foster Civic Chambers?" Four Councilmembers -- Jeannine Pearce, Lena Gonzalez, Suzie Price and Dee Andrews -- have agendized an item for the March 12 City Council meeting to refer a request (a letter) to do so from "nearly three dozen community members" (we name them below) for consideration by the Council's Housing and Neighborhoods Committee and the Harbor Commission. (Council Committee members and Harbor Commissioners are chosen by Mayor Garcia, whom outgoing Mayor Foster endorsed in 2014 and famously headed the "you don't see my name on committee" that independently collected sizable sums supporting his election.) The Committee/Commission recommendations would then return to the full City Council where a majority could vote to approve the action.

In their agendizing memo, the four Councilmembers attach a letter dated Feb. 28, signed by

  • Carmen O.. Perez, Former Harbor Commissioner
  • Gloria Deukmejian, Former First Lady of California
  • Willie Brown, Former California Assembly Speaker
  • Don Knabe, Former LA County Supervisor
  • Dr. Jane Close Conoley, President, CSULB
  • Christopher Steinhauser, Superintendent, LBUSD
  • Gloria Cordero, Long Beach Water Commissioner
  • Rick Zbur, Executive Director, Equality California
  • Naomi Rainey-Pierson, President, NAACP Long Beach Chapter
  • Jessica Quintana, Executive Director, Centro C.H.A.
  • Ron Miller, Executive Secretary, LA/OC Building & Construction Trades Council
  • Peter Santillan, Business Manager/Secretary-Treasurer, Laborers' International Union of North America, Local 1309
  • Rex Pritchard, President, Long Beach Firefighters, IAFF Local 372
  • Jim Foster, President, Long Beach Police Officers Association
  • Skip Keesal, Founder & Shareholder, Keesal, Young & Logan
  • John Molina, Founding Partner, Pacific6
  • Pastor Wayne Chaney, Sr., Antioch Church
  • William Rouse, General Manager, Yellow Cab of Long Beach
  • John Morris, General Manager, Boathouse on the Bay
  • Greg Bombard, President, Catalina Express
  • Dan Zaharoni, Chief Development Officer, Urban Commons
  • Dr. Mike Walter, Professor and Executive Assistant to the President, CSU LB
  • caryn desai, Artistic Director, ICT Long Beach
  • Kelly Lucera, President, Long Beach Symphony
  • Michael Dene, Proprietor, Michael on Naples
  • LaVerne Duncan, Executive Director, Andy Street Community Association
  • Blair Cohn, Executive Director, Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association
  • Steve James, Long Beach Police Officers Association - Retired
  • Kambiz Babaoff, Chairman, Ensemble Real Estate & Investments
  • Steve Goodling, President & CEO, Long Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Judy Seal, Executive Director, Long Beach Education Foundation
  • Terry Antonelli, Owner, L'Opera Restaurant
  • Jim Michaelian, President & CEO, Grand Prix of Long Beach
  • Jean Bixby Smith, Vice Preside\lt and Director, Bixby Land Company
  • Barbara Bixby Blackwell, Philanthropist & Community Leader
  • John Thomas, Historic Preservation Consultant

[Scroll down for further.]

Their letter, addressed to Mayor Garcia and the City Council, states:

The City of Long Beach is blessed to have outstanding community leaders. One person who fits that description is our friend Bob Foster. We are writing to ask you to honor the legacy and contributions of Mayor Bob Foster. We represent a wide range of people from across Long Beach and California and we all agree that Mayor Foster's leadership to our state deserve recognition in his adopted hometown. We ask that you consider naming the new council chamber in the Long Beach Civic Center the Bob Foster Civic Chamber to honor his lifetime of service.

Mayor Bob Foster was elected as the 27th Mayor of Long Beach in June 2006 and overwhelmingly reelected to a second term in 2010. He led the City of Long Beach through the tumultuous period of the great recession, making hard decisions to help the city cope with significant funding reductions and to make the city fiscally stable in the long run. He helped forge a path forward on pension reform by collaborating with employee groups to protect their pensions while also reducing pension obligations for the City.

Mayor Foster also helped lead innovative public private partnerships like the George Deukmejian Courthouse and developed the process to build the new Long Beach Civic Center, which will open later this year. When the seismic deficiencies of the current City Hall were discovered, he worked with staff to conduct an RFI and RFP process to build a new City Hall, Main Library, and Lincoln Park by leveraging existing dollars and using private capital to deliver public facilities. The Civic Center project would not have happened without his leadership and vision.

Before being elected Mayor, Bob served as president of Southern California Edison and retired in 2006 after more than 20 years with the company. As an Edison executive, he led California's largest electric company through the 1999 energy crisis. During his tenure, Edison developed the largest renewable, clean energy program (solar, geothermal, biomass and wind) in the United States.

Mayor Foster began his career in public service as a staffer in the California State Senate and California Energy Commission where he established statewide energy efficiency standards that are still enforced today. He was appointed as the Environment Committee chair in 2008, elected to the Advisory Board in 2009 and the Board of Trustees in 2010 for the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

Mayor Foster also served on the Board of Governors for the California Independent Systems Operator (ISO) and as a trustee to the California State University System. The CSU System saw impressive gains in student achievement and growth during his time on the Board.

Mayor Foster is a graduate of San Jose State University in public administration and received an Honorary Doctorate in recognition of his significant contributions.

Our specific request is that the Council forward this letter to the Council's Housing and Neighborhoods Committee, as well as the Harbor Commission, for consideration. Few Californians can match Mayor Foster's achievements or the breadth and depth of his service. We think naming the new chamber the Bob Foster Civic Chamber is a fitting tribute to his lifetime of service.

We thank you for your consideration.



The proposed agendized action would provide at least three opportunities (a Council Committee meeting, a Harbor Commission meeting and a future City Council meeting) at which the general public/taxpayers could be heard on the matter.





Support really independent news in Long Beach. No one in's ownership, reporting or editorial decision-making has ties to incumbent Long Beach officials, development interests, advocacy groups or other special interests; or is seeking or receiving benefits of City development-related decisions; or holds a City Hall appointive position; or has contributed sums to political campaigns for Long Beach incumbents or challengers. isn't part of an out of town corporate cluster and no one its ownership, editorial or publishing decisionmaking has been part of the governing board of any City government body or other entity on whose policies we report. is reader and advertiser supported. You can help keep really independent news in LB similar to the way people support NPR and PBS stations. We're not non-profit so it's not tax deductible but $49.95 (less than an annual dollar a week) helps keep us online.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Recommend to your Facebook friends:

Follow with:




Return To Front Page

Contact us:

Adoptable pet of the week:

Carter Wood Floors
Hardwood Floor Specialists
Call (562) 422-2800 or (714) 836-7050

Copyright © 2018, LLC. All rights reserved. Terms of Use/Legal policy, click here. Privacy Policy, click here