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Eric Garcetti

Fight For What You Believe In


In this episode

From homelessness and the housing crisis to traffic and education, Los Angeles County Mayor Eric Garcetti faces challenging, pressing issues day in and day out. But how did a young kid who grew up in an immigrant family in the San Fernando Valley become the leader and change-maker he is today?

All of Eric’s life experiences contribute to his ability to search tirelessly for solutions and lead the Los Angeles community towards a better future. When facing new opportunities, Eric considers the quote “only do this if you can’t not.” This motto has supported and encouraged Eric on his journey to becoming the 47th (and youngest) mayor of Los Angeles. We all have a lot to learn from Eric’s commitment to community, work ethic, and leadership skills.  

In this episode, Randall and Eric talk about how Eric’s childhood and early education shaped who he is today, how he learned the value of hard work, why he ran for public office, political issues Los Angeles is facing, why giving back is the most important thing we can do, the four most important qualities to have on the path to excellence, and all he’s learned along the way.  

Topics include:

- How his trip to Ethiopia as a 16-year-old changed his life

- Value of odd jobs and his work program for young Angelenos

- Importance of both classroom learning and “real-life” learning

- The ‘Will I regret this?” Test

- Advice for people who want to be politicians

- Why we should be more afraid of succeeding than failing

- Why he views himself as “Storyteller in Chief”

- The value of transparency and accountability in politics

- The three C’s of leadership: convene, coerce, and convince

- The importance of sharing power and using soft power

- The education and housing crises in California

- How to end homelessness

- LA’s foster care system

- His experience fostering seven children

- Controversies he’s overcome

- Why you can’t take yourself too personally

- Value of having a great team

- And other topics…

Eric Garcetti is a fourth-generation Angeleno and the 42nd Mayor of Los Angeles. In 2017, Eric won re-election by the widest margin in the history of Los Angeles. He was recently appointed to serve as the US ambassador to India.  

Prior to becoming Mayor in 2013, Eric spent four terms as Council President on the L.A. City Council. Beyond his time in government, Eric served his country as an intelligence officer in the United States Navy Reserve, and taught at Occidental College and the University of Southern California.

Eric received his B.A. and M.A. from Columbia University. He studied as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, and later at the London School of Economics.

He is also a jazz pianist and photographer. He and his wife, First Lady Amy Elaine Wakeland, have been foster parents for over a decade, and are the proud parents of a daughter, Maya.



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