Robin Kramer will return to the third floor of City Hall as the chief of staff to Mayor Villaraigosa; she previously served in the same capacity for Richard Riordan. The deputies are Jimmy Blackman, Villaraigosa's council CoS, and Marcus Allen from Controller Laura Chick's staff.
Carolyn Webb de Macias, currently the Vice President for External Relations at USC, will take a one-year sabbatical to serve as senior advisor. Robert "Bud" Ovrom, CEO of the CRA, will be Deputy Mayor for Community and Economic Development.
(Chick follows up with a statement about Marcus Allen, her chief deputy: "From the first day I took Office as City Controller, Marcus Allen has been an invaluable part of my team. As my Chief of Staff, Marcus took the Controller's auditing division to new heights, making it one of the best in the nation. All of today's appointments speak volumes about Mayor-elect Villaraigosa's commitment to excellence and his desire to hit the ground running.")
* Saturday papers: Praise for Kramer from Raphael Sonenshein of Cal State Fullerton: "She's got tons of experience. She's widely well-regarded." Kramer says she turned Villaraigosa down repeatedly, but caved after he pulled that all-nighter to settle the hotel labor dispute. Times, Daily News, Business Journal.
The Villaraigosa transition team's press release follows:
MAYOR-ELECT VILLARAIGOSA NAMES SENIOR TEAM
Individuals bring depth and breadth of experience
and expertise to new mayoral administration
Los Angeles Mayor-elect Antonio Villaraigosa today announced the first members of the senior staff in his new administration. The group collectively represents decades of in-depth, hands-on government experience along with a broad range of expertise in the community.
"I am extremely pleased that these talented individuals have agreed to join with me in building a better Los Angeles," said Villaraigosa. "Each of them is uniquely talented and ultimately committed to the people of Los Angeles. As I set out to bring the best and the brightest to City Hall, this senior team establishes the gold standard."
"Change is never easy and we have a lot of rough waters ahead of us as we seek to create a fresh start for the City. I feel certain that these leaders will skillfully help steer the ship toward a Los Angeles of which we can all be proud," the Mayor-elect added.
Robin M. Kramer, who has been overseeing Villaraigosa's day-to-day transition operations, will become the Mayor-elect's Chief of Staff. She served in this function for Mayor Richard Riordan from 1995 to 1998, after which she joined the California Community Foundation as its first Senior Fellow. She will leave her current post as senior director at The Broad Foundation, which aims to raise student achievement in major U.S. urban school districts through improved management, governance and labor relations.
"I am both humbled and joyful that the Mayor-elect has enlisted me to join him as he tackles the tough issues facing Los Angeles today," said Kramer. "Energy and leadership is in his DNA. He has a great capacity and energy to bring people together to solve tough community problems, and I am enthusiastic about being part of an outstanding team."
Two Deputy Chiefs of Staff were also named by the Mayor-elect today, including Marcus Allen, who serves as Chief Deputy Controller for City Controller Laura Chick, and Jimmy Blackman, Villaraigosa's current City Council Chief of Staff. Allen has been with the Controller's office since 2000, in both his current capacity as Chief Deputy Controller and prior, as Director of Financial Analysis and Reporting. He has also worked with the Los Angeles County Probation Department and the Chief Legislative Analyst's Office for the City. Blackman has worked with Villaraigosa since his early days as a State Assemblymember, during his tenure as Speaker of the Assembly and through the 2001 mayoral race. He served as Chief of Staff to State Senator Richard Alarcon from 2002-2003.
Serving as a senior advisor will be Carolyn Webb de Macias, currently the Vice President for External Relations at the University of Southern California. Webb de Macias, who plans to take a one-year sabbatical from the university, will provide counsel to Villaraigosa in a variety of areas, including his education policy agenda.
Robert "Bud" Ovrom will join the Villaraigosa administration as the Deputy Mayor for Community and Economic Development. Ovrom is the Chief Executive Officer for the City Community Redevelopment Agency, a position he has held since 2003. Prior to that position, he had an outstanding tenure as the City Manager for the City of Burbank for eighteen years.
"I've said before that Los Angeles is a city of big dreams and bold ideas," Villaraigosa said. "The enormity of our potential is both invigorating and overwhelming. I place my complete faith in my senior team to help harness that potential and make it a reality for all Angelenos."
# # #
Robin Kramer * Chief of Staff
Kramer has been a creative and effective leader in Los Angeles for three decades, combining her love of the community with a varied experience in the public, private, philanthropic and nonprofit sectors.
In addition to her leadership roles at the Broad Foundation (2004-present), and The California Community Foundation (1998-2004), Kramer served as a consultant and interim president of what became the Los Angeles County Alliance for Student Achievement, the successor organization formed by the region's two leading groups (Learn and LAAMP) aimed at systemic public school reform. She planned and facilitated institutional problem solving for a variety of public and private sector entities, such as the Oakland and Pasadena Unified School Districts, The Broad Institute, the Times Mirror Foundation, the Righteous Persons Foundation, the Los Angeles Music Center and the Los Angeles Children's Planning Council.
Kramer, 52, served in the entrepreneurial administration of Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, joining as Deputy Mayor for Communications and Community Affairs in October, 2003, and becoming Chief of Staff in 1995. Previously, she served as Chief Deputy for Councilmember Richard Alatorre (1985-1990) and Councilmember Bob Ronka (1978-1981). Kramer also spent time as a public relations executive, executive director of the Coro Foundation, and as director of the Democratic Party of Southern California. Kramer holds a BA in Political Studies and Journalism from Pitzer College in Claremont, and an MA in Urban Studies from Occidental College.
President of Temple Israel of Hollywood and Vice President of the Breed Street Shul Project in Boyle Heights, Kramer is married with three sons and resides in Los Angeles.
Marcus A. Allen * Deputy Chief of Staff
Allen has served as the Chief Deputy Controller in the City of Los Angeles since 2002, during which time his responsibilities have included implementing policy and managing the operations of the Controller's Office. The Office of the Controller has 180 employees. Prior to becoming the Chief Deputy Controller, Allen served as the Director of Financial Analysis and Reporting in the office.
While the Chief Deputy for Business Development for the Los Angeles County Probation Department (1998-2000), Allen managed a staff of five directors to whom 1,500 staff reported.
Having also worked in several different capacities within the office of the City's Chief Legislative Analyst, Allen has a profound knowledge of the inner workings of city government. He has a B.A. in Political Science from UCLA and an M.A. in Public Policy Studies from the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago.
Allen and his wife have a son and two daughters and reside in Carlsbad.
Jimmy Blackman * Deputy Chief of Staff
Blackman, 33, is a native of Los Angeles and a graduate of the public school system. He attended Stanford University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and was on the Dean's Honor list for four years. Blackman went on to earn a Masters Degree in Public Policy from USC, where he was a Dean's List Merit Scholar.
Upon completion of his Masters Degree, Blackman began working for Assemblymember Antonio Villaraigosa in 1997, where he served in a number of roles, including Special Assistant when Villaraigosa was elected Speaker of the Assembly. Blackman served as Chief of Staff to Senator Richard Alarcon from 2002-2003, Campaign Manager for Villaraigosa's City Council Campaign in 2003 and has been the Councilmember's Chief of Staff since his election that year.
An active athlete, Blackman currently resides in Westchester and is the proud father of daughter Alyssa, who is nine years old.
Carolyn Webb de Macias * Senior Advisor
Carolyn Webb de Macias was named USC Vice President for External Relations in January 2002. In this role, she provides strategic direction and leadership for the university's outreach programs, including civic and community relations, cultural relations, federally-sponsored service programs in education and economic development, and local and state government relations. In addition, she is an adjunct faculty member in the USC Rossier School of Education.
Prior to her appointment as Vice President, Webb de Macias was Senior Associate Provost at USC, serving as facilitator for USC's Arts Initiative and as the provost's liaison to the deans of four arts schools and the Director of the USC Fisher Gallery. She was Chief of Staff for Los Angeles City Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas from 1991 to 1997 and served as Los Angeles Area Vice President for Pacific Bell from 1985 to 1989.
Webb de Macias, 57, serves on the USC National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center Executive Board, the California African American Museum Board, the SCE Community Advisory Council, the Los Angeles African American Woman's Public Policy Institute (as President), and the Central City Association Executive Committee. She married, has three grown sons and is a resident of Alhambra.
Robert "Bud" Ovrom * Deputy Mayor, Community and Economic Development
Bud Ovrom came to the City of Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency as its Executive Director in 2003 after a distinguished tenure as the City Manager of the City of Burbank, where he served from 1985-2003. Ovrom is credited with having provided the necessary leadership to transforming Burbank into to a thriving job hub and economic force. Prior to the City of Burbank, he also served in that capacity in the Cities of Downey (1983-1985) and Monrovia (1974-1983), and as the Assistant to the City Manager in Simi Valley (1970-1974).
Ovrom earned his undergraduate degree in political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, with an emphasis in international relations. After serving Guatemala for the Peace Corps in 1967 for two and a half years, Ovrom returned to the U.S. and to a career in local government.
Married with two grown daughters, Ovrom, 59, and his wife Denise live in Burbank