Joe Buscaino was elected on January 17, 2012 to fill the vacancy left by Janice Hahn, following her successful bid for US Congress and was re-elected on March 5, 2013 with 83% of the vote. Starting as a political outsider, Joe ran an inspiring campaign on the ideas of a new kind of leadership and empowering the community to become the dark horse candidate and, eventually, the overall winner.
Councilman Buscaino quickly won the respect of his City Council colleagues, and was appointed by the Council President to serve as Chairman of the powerful Public W
orks Committee. As Chair, Buscaino is tasked with oversight of the Department of Public Works, and its Bureaus of Sanitation, Street Services, Street Lighting, Engineering, and Contract Administration. The Department of Public Works is the City’s third largest department and is comprised of a staff of more than 5,000 employees who are responsible for the construction, renovation, and operation of City facilities and infrastructure. The Department builds the City’s streets, installs its sewers, and constructs storm drains as well as public buildings, rights-of-way, and service facilities.
Councilman Buscaino’s other committee assignments include Public Safety (LAPD, LAFD, Emergency Management), Trade, Commerce & Tourism (Port of LA, Los Angeles World Airports, LA Convention Center), and Information Technology and General Services (General Services Department, Information Technology Department, City Clerk’s Office).
Prior to his election to the City Council, Buscaino served for 15 years as a police officer in the Los Angeles Police Department. His assignments included the Office of Chief of Police, West Traffic Division, Emergency Operations Division and, for the previous six years, Senior Lead Officer for the Harbor area, where he became a well-liked and well-respected leader in the community. He created the LAPD’s first Teen Community Police Advisory Board, an organization that works with teens to problem solve and break the barriers between police and teenagers. His concept of bringing youths’ perspectives to problem solving with the police department was implemented citywide in 2011.
Councilman Buscaino has lived in the 15th Council District his entire life, and is a first-generation Italian-American, whose parents emigrated from Italy over 40 years ago, in pursuit of the American dream. He graduated Cum Laude, with a BA in Communication, from California State – Dominguez Hills.
He has served on Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Harbor Area, the San Pedro YWCA’s Racial Justice Committee, and the Advisory Council for the Los Angeles Watts Summer Games and is active with Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church and various Italian-American organizations.
Joe and his wife, Geralyn, a teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District, are raising their two children, and their dog, Rocco, in San Pedro.