Well, it’s official: La Cañada Flintridge residents care, and they show it by voting.
The final outstanding ballots from this year’s November general election were certified by the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office this week, and vote tallies indicate more LCF residents voted in this presidential election than any in recent history, with the majority supporting the Democratic candidate.
About 87.49% of LCF’s 15,606 registered voters cast ballots this year, compared with 78.72% of those registered in 2016, 79.96% in 2012 and 85.07% in 2008. The county’s breakdown of municipal records online does not extend past 2007.
LCF voters last month overwhelmingly chose Democratic candidate Joseph Biden, who tallied 8,259 local ballots compared with 4,805 votes for President Donald J. Trump. In 2016, city residents cast 6,256 votes for Democrat Hillary Clinton versus 4,071 for Trump. Meanwhile, in 2012, locals favored Republican Mitt Romney over Democratic incumbent Barack Obama, 6,072 votes to 5,061. In 2008, Obama narrowly won in LCF with 5,660 votes against Republican John McCain, who received 5,650.
In the state’s 25th Senate District, LCF supported local resident and Democratic incumbent Sen. Anthony Portantino with 7,904 votes, while another 5,074 cast votes for Republican Kathleen Hazelton. In the 43rd Assembly District race, 7,025 preferred Democratic incumbent Laura Friedman, while Republican Mike Graves was the choice of 5,619. In the 28th Congressional District, Democratic incumbent Adam Schiff garnered 7,536 local votes versus Republican candidate Adam Early’s 5,582.
ANDERSON, EPSTEIN DECLARED SCHOOL BOARD WINNERS
Meanwhile, the final results for two seats on the La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board confirmed victory for a pair who never relinquished their early leads: Caroline Anderson (5,148 votes) and Josh Epstein (5,121). Candidates Jeremiah Arnold and Belinda Randolph garnered 3,946 and 3,349 votes, respectively.
Anderson and Epstein will be sworn in at the end of the next board meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 15, when board members Brent Kuszyk and Andrew Blumenfeld officially finish their terms.
“I’ve known and worked with both Caroline and Josh a long time, and I’m thrilled to get the opportunity to work even closer with them,” said board President Joe Radabaugh. “Our community is fortunate to have two such capable and experienced community leaders joining [us], especially during these challenging times. I also want to be sure to thank Brent Kuszyk and Andrew Blumenfeld for their amazing contributions and friendship, and to wish them continued success in their future endeavors.”
LCUSD Superintendent Wendy Sinnette praised all of the candidates for their efforts and time, as well as offering congratulations to the new board members-elect. With a looming budget deadline and implementation of annual goals, the board will hit the ground running in 2021.
“All four governing board candidates really demonstrated their commitment to LCUSD and their passion for sustaining and furthering a world-class district for our children. I am grateful to each of them for their dedication,” Sinnette said. “I am happy to congratulate Caroline and Josh. I’ve worked with both of them over the years and have appreciated their work ethic, integrity, intelligence and vast amounts of energy and insight. As superintendent, having two board members with such exemplary skill sets leaving, i.e. Brent and Andrew, I feel most fortunate that President Radabaugh will be swearing in equally talented new members.”
After waiting for the final ballots to be counted before officially issuing an acceptance, Epstein said he is excited to get started and dig into the work. He’s been attending the California School Board Association annual conference this week in preparation for the first 100 days, he noted.
“I’ve been so appreciative of the community support shown to me, and really, I’ve been very impressed with how active the community has been since the moment we started this campaign — all kinds of people reached out to me with really thoughtful comments and suggestions,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to starting the work, and also, a little nervous: I have big shoes to fill! I just want to help work toward what is the very best for our students every step of the way.”
Anderson, who will be the ﬁrst woman of color and the ﬁrst female Asian Paciﬁc Islander to serve on the LCUSD board, said she has been busy prepping for the work ahead by attending the CSBA annual orientation and the Los Angeles County School Trustee Association meeting, studying up on the local board bylaws, and continuing conversations with school families.
She previously sent out an ofﬁcial thank you to all of those who supported her and helped work on her campaign.
“The campaign process was difﬁcult at times, but the experience only solidiﬁed my commitment to help give a voice to every student, parent and teacher. Throughout my campaign, I enjoyed amazing conversations with people in our community who helped me gain new insights from different viewpoints. I am honored to have the opportunity to work with the other governing board members to give back to our community.”