Steve Soboroff, of the L.A.’s most prominent developers and a long-serving member of its Board of Police Commissioners, has endorsed U.S. Rep. Karen Bass in the city’s mayoral race today.
“I believe that Karen Bass is exactly who Los Angeles needs right now,” he said in a statement.
He went on to praise Bass’ “depth of experience, clear vision, and relentless work ethic,” as well as her “practical and realistic public safety plan for our city.” Homelessness and public safety have emerged as central issues in the highly competitive mayoral race, with many Angelenos citing newfound fears about personal safety.
“Her plan goes beyond picking an arbitrary number of new cops and includes a clear path to implementation,” Soboroff said. “It’s all about getting to the finish line.”
Soboroff has had a hand in some of the most prominent projects in Los Angeles over the last 30 years, ranging from the Staples Center, now called the Crytpo.com Arena, to the Alameda Corridor. He led the development of Playa Vista, a multi-billion dollar mixed-use complex near Marina del Rey whose approvals were hotly contested over a decade ago. He’s also held numerous high-profile civic roles besides his service on the police commission, including a stint as president of the Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Commission.
Soboroff placed third in his own mayoral run in 2001, just missing a spot in a runoff election.
Soboroff currently serves as a Los Angeles police commissioner–he recently stepped down from the chairperson’s role–and is currently spearheading a proposal to subsidize rent for new recruits. He had not issued a mayoral primary endorsement for decades, according to his statement.
Recent polling has Bass, a Democratic stalwart who parlayed a background as a South L.A. activist into a successful national political career, running neck and neck with the billionaire developer Rick Caruso. The primary is on June 7; if no one candidate wins at least 50 percent of the vote, the top two will advance to a November runoff.